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AidMarket - I AM part of the solution. How are You involved?

PostPosted:Mon Mar 26, 2007 4:28 am
by Thorsteinn
AidMarket's mission is to provide a marketplace for foreign aid and philanthropic work. An open source market for individuals and organizations to propose small-scale projects that promise positive development given piecemeal improvements. AidMarket enhances the impact of aid on poverty reduction by enabling donors to get more involved in the development effort. AidMarket is apolitical and will maintain account transparency. Our long term goal is to improve the quality and availability of educational material to the poor.

I AM part of the solution. How are You involved?

The world is full of miserable places. One way of living comfortably is not to think about them or, when you do, to donate money to some large fund that has a particular mission. AidMarket is set on providing another way for donors to get involved.

To get involved, institutions, agencies, companies, groups, and individuals must, at no cost, register as an agent. When you register as an agent on, you become an "I AM". Agents can contribute anywhere from a few dollars to thousands of dollars to the project(s) they find most worthy. Agents can assume responsibility for particular necessities or cost particular expenditures. AidMarket enables donors, in a sense, to 'shop' for the means of their contribution.

Not all I AM agents must assume responsibility for particular necessities. However, for sustainable development, someone must be responsible for the integral parts of any given project. Those who wish to limit their involvement to the contribution of funds can either contribute to a project fund or choose to cost something on the work order that doesn't require any future responsibilities.

The "I" is assigned to agents to increase their sense of individual accountability. The transparent bookkeeping of AidMarket enables agents to monitor the effect of their involvement. It gives donors the opportunity to observe the benefits of their contribution, as opposed to seeing it drowned in the total sums of international agencies. Agents will have the right to rate the cost/ben analysis of particular projects so that the projects that are most needed will surface and are made more visible. Similarly, the I AM agents can rate the overall performance of double I AM agents (II AMs).

When the time comes, AidMarket will establish a prestigious award for those I AM and II AM agents whose effort and achievements stand out. This award, in combination with individual accountability and the visibility of progress, will increase the weight of pride in one‘s work as well as the incentive one has for reaching positive outcomes. I AM part of the solution. How are you involved?


Double I AM agents are the project leaders, they are the one's who submit proposals. These II AM agents must register with AidMarket. Official identification is required. II AM agents can propose piecemeal interventions as means to improve the particular community they can relate to. AidMarket is here to benefit and serve people like Patrick Awuah and Dr. Farmer, as well as all those who want to make a difference.

AidMarket requires photographic evidence of before and after status. For larger projects the progress should be depicted with a series of photos and other documentation of progression. If applicable, please define which parts of your proposed development are 'integral parts' of the project. Whether it is to mobilize I AM agents to support a particular project or to mobilize the people to take advantage of AidMarket, II AM agents are exercising leadership.

We remind you that the Poor are our customers. The project proposed must benefit the poor. The cost/benefit analysis should be intuitive and justified. In this business few words are necessary to justify beneficial development for the poor. AidMarket is better suited for small projects than it is for global and national initiatives. I AM agents are able to rate the cost/benefit analysis of particular proposals. This is done so to make the most needed improvements more visible.

The expenditures should be described in detail as possible. The tags will be: II AM agent | Project # | Location(x4) | Description | Cost | Development Category/Type | Cost/Benefit Analysis & Rating (which I AM agents will be able to evaluate and rate). All these tags are searchable.

If the II AM agent is not an individual, then the project proposal must have a designated contact person. This person is accountable for the funds donated to that particular project. This person will be accountable for documenting project status and progress. This person must understand that our books are transparent and that the project requires monitoring and feedback.

The contact person for a particular project must register as a Double I AM agent. Double I AM agents must expect to be criticized and/or glorified depanding on effort and outcomes. The most successful and influencial of all Double I AM agents will be titled Leader I AM agent. The Leader I AM agents will have more flexibility to operate, they will more easily acquire funding and connect with specialized problem-solvers.

In recent years, the quantity of education has gone up, but the quality remains low. This incoherency has made the available resources less efficient at the cost of leaving aside necessary components of the whole. This is where poor feedback, invisibility, and collective responsibility is to blame. People mean well, but the job is poorly done.

For example, World Bank researchers Deon Filmer and Lant Pritchett estimate that the return on spending on instructional materials in education is up to fourteen times higher than the return on spending on physical facilities, yet donors continue to favor more observable buildings over less observable educational material. There isn't enough coherency in the effort to spread education.

Thor, the founder of AidMarket, has argued that improving the availability and quality of educational material is the single most important effort needed today! Many of the undeveloped communities will have access to the technology that has an incredible power to educate, but the same technology can also have the sole purpose to entertain. It is important that we focus our effort on developing quality educational material and make it available to those who may not have quality educators. Children often are, and should be, able to learn independently. Without quality educational material and proper instruction most of Negroponte's computers will be used to play bloody games and watch *beep* on the internet.

Again, the academic community must bridge higher levels of education with the development efforts around the world to improve the results of education-based initiatives. Students who go to teachers' training have to learn how to develop educational material as well as how to instruct students learning from that material. While learning how to teach, these students and their professors generate a rich source of material. If we employ the real-world data accumulated by AidMarket in the analysis and education of teachers, then the by-product of these studies, generated year after year, becomes an applicable resource for international aid and development.

These resources should serve as the basis for creation of educational material tailor-maid to address local needs and interest. It will also function as a positive incentive for those students and professors who wish to see their work published and applied. With the help of translators, the quality material could be shared with those who have access to the internet.

Transparent books on particular projects will improve the monitoring of agents and development progress. The progress being monitored will not be on a scale with global objectives, but particular and localized. Monitoring of performance and outcomes is crucial if we want to hold agents accountable.

The information generated by AidMarket is a form of resource. The information available to those who monitor agents and projects could, and should, be used for academic purposes. The data offers many potential research hypotheses and could be used as subject matter for classroom instruction. AidMarket will build on this resource to incorporate Academics more thoroughly in the monitoring and evaluation of development.

It is AidMarket's firm conviction that Academics could do public service by applying their techniques to evaluate the projects, programs, and approaches taken by aid agencies as well as I AM agents. AidMarket will establish a relationship with institutes of higher education as means to employ academic researchers in a more fruitful role so that they may serve as the unofficial independent evaluators.

AidMarket suggests that the mechanisms for monitoring, research, and feedback should be a part of the local curriculum because any information collected will be more relevant if locals work to obtain that information from other locals. For the data obtained, we need independent scientific evaluation of particular interventions from which development agencies can learn. AidMarket will make relevant academic research and evaluation visible and credit it. There will always be more students and professors looking to improve and impress, so the resource will never deplete. Of course, other agencies will also be encouraged to analyze, share, and criticize the data available to all.

Thank you