Project Information and Management System Network (PIMSnet) has

By Warren Tucker,2014-04-08 21:12
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Project Information and Management System Network (PIMSnet) has

NATP sub-project ‘Institutionalization of Research Priority

    Setting, Monitoring and Evaluation and Networking of

    Social Scientists’

     Brief Report:

    The main objectives of the NATP under O & M component was to accelerate the process of organization and management reforms, which in turn would increase overall efficiency of the National Agricultural Research System (NARS). One of the components of NATP under O & M was the institutionalization of improved research priority setting and project monitoring and evaluation (PME) mechanism in the NATP and

    NARS. Monitoring and evaluation mechanism is to effectively assess research efforts against well-defined targets, avoid duplication of research efforts and provide feedback to research planning process. It would also help to establish link between performance evaluation and incentive mechanism. This PME activity has been implemented through integrated efforts of NCAP, IASRI and NAARM.

    IASRI was entrusted the responsibility of development of monitoring mechanism, development of Project Information and Management System Network (PIMSNET) and linking it with Internet as well as development of a Agricultural Statistician Network (ASN).

    PIMSNET has been developed and implemented on 512 Kbps Internet connection on 2 Mbps leased line and is available on the website (Fig. 1). Data in

    respect of 845 NATP-sub projects in operation at 296 institutions with 1578 cooperating centres are available for reporting. It contains information on the Project Basic Data (Project Title, Start date, Sanction date, Lead Center, Total budget, No. of Cooperating Centers, Objectives, Activity under each objective etc.); Project Budget (Year wise budget, sanctioned, released, utilized); Project Expert (Experts associated with the project); Project Component Details ( Equipment, Civil work, Consultancy Services, Contractual Services, Training Requirements, Work shops, Operational Services, Revenue Generation etc.) apart from information required for monitoring and concurrent evaluation.

    PIMSNET has a module that acts essentially as a monitoring system of NATP. Several

    monitoring quantifiable indicators have been devised and implemented in PIMSNET. Through this module, both the management and the researchers can take part in the information flow. The module stores information on the progress of the projects for the different activities in terms of the expected targets achieved or not, and if not, the reasons thereof and the steps taken to achieve the targets as reported by the Principal Investigator (PI). It is possible to monitor the half yearly and annual progress in terms of three types of indicators for physical progress, financial progress and scientific/technical progress. The salient research achievements as well as shortcomings and difficulties faced by the researchers are captured by the system and the management can effectively monitor the progress of all the projects right from their desktop. The system also has an inbuilt algorithm to determine the projects, which are not performing well/ performing good/ very good/ excellent. Provision has also been made to review the progress report of PI by the Site Committees, State Level Committees and the Peer Review Teams.

    Fig. 1 Home Page of PIMSNET

    PIMSNET has output modules for the reports and queries through which top level and middle level management may get reports and queries as per their specific needs. The system is able to produce the following four types of reports:

    General Reports: These are ready to use reports at macro level. These reports are generated on the basis of a single criteria such as projects running under a specific agro eco system, projects relating to a particular thematic area say biotechnology, projects in a particular state say Punjab and so on.

    Reports by Selection: These custom reports meet the specific need of the management. These reports are generated on the basis of options selected by the user based on multiple criteria. One can choose one or more criteria from a ready to use list of options for a desired projects and the module generates reports meeting all the selected criteria. For example: A selection option may be to get a report on projects running under Irrigated -agro ecosystem with thematic area Integrated Pest Management and having a budget of more than 20 lakhs.

    Specific Reports: These reports are related to the details of a particular project. These are of utmost importance when management needs to find out specific details of a single project. These reports contain all the sanctioned items for the project, like equipments procured, contractual services hired, training obtained, civil work carried out etc. as well as project objectives, head wise budget, and the experts (scientific manpower) involved.

    Administrative Reports: These reports act as a tool for the administration and

    management of the information storage and user management under the PIMSNET.

    These reports provide great flexibility for the administrator for the management of the PIMSNET.

    The centralized on-line monitoring process implemented through PIMSNET will act as a tool for institutional reforms as the monitoring processes, when in place, help in increasing working efficiency and work culture in the system. The reporting through PIMSNET will help in measuring the overall impact of the research and extension technologies developed through NATP sub-projects. The monitoring through PIMSNET would also usher in electronic governance and office automation. Another significant outcome of the in-house development of PIMSNET has been the capacity building at IASRI to take up projects of similar nature in future.

    Agricultural Statistician’s Network (ASN)

    This web based information system has been developed and hosted from the IASRI server at the address (Fig. 2).

Objectives of Agricultural Statisticians’ Network System

    ; To design a framework for Agricultural Statistician Network System.

    ; To design and develop a database for social scientists in ICAR and SAU’s.

    ; To implement the design using Internet technologies.

    ; To design the user interface and framework for the website.

    ; To develop and deploy the website.

    The site has been structured to cater different type of information so as to meet the requirement of statisticians. The information base has been categorized discipline wise to provide the comprehensive knowledge about a particular discipline. The website has been structured to provide information categorically for the following disciplines:

    ; Agriculture Statistics

    ; Mathematical Statistics

    ; Biometrics

    ; Statistics

    ; Bio-Statistics

    ; Computer Application

    ASN contains 13 important channels and two other links for online registration and online data management of experts. Online registration gives feasibility to quickly become member of the site. For utilizing the services provided by Utilities, user has to be registered member of the site.

    The ASN provides four major utilities namely Discussion Group, Chat, Search, Notice Board for on line interaction. This web site provides a huge amount of information to the user. This information is about Institute/Department, Experts, Courses, Books, Statistical Journals, Statistical Packages and Agricultural Statistician Conference. On-line data management module facilitates the online entry and updating of expert information. After authentication user can perform the action of adding new information and updating existing information.

    Fig. 2 Home Page of ASN

Architecture of Software for PIMSnet and ASN:

Both the software’s are designed and developed on three-tier client server architecture.

    The architecture of the PIMSNET and ASN is composed of the following three layers:

    ; Client Side Interface Layer (CSIL) using HTML, Java Script, Visual Basic Script,


    ; Server Side Application Layer (SSAL) using ASP installed on the IIS 5.0(or

    above) web server at Windows 2000 Server etc.

    ; Database Layer (DBL) in Microsoft SQL Server .

    The architecture of the PIMSNET is composed of the following three layers:

    ; Client Side Interface Layer (CSIL) using HTML, Java Script, Visual Basic Script,


    ; Server Side Application Layer (SSAL) using ASP installed on the IIS 5.0(or

    above) web server at Windows 2000 Server etc.

    ; Database Layer (DBL) in Microsoft SQL Server.

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