YEREVAN (Armenpress)–UNDP Project on Support to Information Society and Democratic Governance convened a press conference to launch its FORUM website (www.forum.am).
UNDP and the National Academy of Science initiated the project in February 2001 to promote the democratic development in Armenia through the use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT).
The key components and objectives of the project are: e-society–the creation of Internet tools in Armenian and establishment of regional Internet centers; e-governance–the creation of e-government system for territorial administration; e-democracy–the creation of online communities; and e-coordination–the international assistance coordination through ICT consultative group.
The establishment of online communities as the key element of the e-democracy component of the project hopes to increase public participation in decision making–to create new opportunities for public awareness–and to establish new forum for interaction.
The online communities started in April 2001 at "Forum" website at www.forum.am. "Forum" now hosts communities on human rights–environmental protection–politics–human development–gender issues–and volunteering. The main tools used by the communities are the bulletin board–mailboxes–gallery and newsletters. Interested groups and individuals can join discussions in operational communities or create new communities to discuss issues of common interest and concern with colleagues and friends–publish results of discussions in newsletters–create photo galleries and post important and interesting documen’s.