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In 1982, the Government of Ethiopia in collaboration with the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) founded the Demographic Training and Research center (DTRC). Due to its research status, DTRC became one of the units of the Institute of Development research (IDR) which serves as an umbrella for its academic programs. The Center's activities have received major support from Addis Ababa University (AAU) and UNFPA as well as additional funding from other agencies.
DTRC is working within the framework of the training and research programs of the University and increasingly, in support of the training, research service areas of the Ethiopian Development Policies. Furthermore, DTRC has been assisting the implementation of the National Population Policy and the Plan of Action by providing skilled personnel and by conducting operational researches. In addition, it has been collaborating actively with other research and academic institutions.
As DTRC is the only training and research center in the country dealing with population issues, the growing importance of population in policy making and planning, and its role in development activities of the country has increased the significance of the Center.
The long term objectives of the Center are to train high level personnel capable of developing and teaching courses in population studies in the institutions of higher learning in the country; as well as to increase country's capacity in conducting scientific research on population problems with a view of integrating population issues with development activities.
Courses at the graduate level for the Master of Science Degree in Demography are designed to produce manpower capable of dealing with population and development data, including its collection, processing, analysis, interpretation and its relationship with socioeconomic development. The emphasis is to provide students a strong background in technical an(l substantive demography as well as practical orientation of population problems.
The program provides formal course work and thesis research, which normally takes two years. Admission to the graduate program in demography is open to first degree holders who meet the general admission requirements of the School of Graduate Studies of AAU. The usual applicants for admission into the program are B.A./B.Sc. degree holders in Economics, Geography, Mathematics, Sociology and Statistics.
DTRC provides a minor in Demography to the Department of Geography, and has been assisting other departments of the university, such as Economics and History, in teaching courses in demography/population studies at the undergraduate level.
Short-term training on population-related issues and basic demographic principles and methods is offered to personnel working in the areas of population and development at national, regional and zonal level of both governmental and non-governmental organizations. In the pursuit of disseminating research findings and promoting public awareness on population-related issues DTRC has been conducting a number of national as well as departmental level seminars, conferences and workshops.
With an ultimate objective of making valuable contributions for policy formulation, program implementation and at the same time for developing a well organized information system on the demography of the country, DTRC considers research as another equally important component of its activity. To accomplish this, both the staff and students of the Center have made substantial contributions mainly in demographic research in the country. However, there are still areas of policy relevance that have not been adequately addressed.
This suggests the need for a shift of emphasis from a stress on demographic perspectives to broader issues, such as:
Specifically, psychological, cultural and socio-economic determinants and consequences of population dynamic will be translated into recommendations for intervention within the National Population Policy and relate development programs.
Research is funded by AAU, and also supported b grants from multilateral, bilateral and non-governmental agencies and foundations. These broad population and development issues are addressed in multidisciplinary teams, complimented by the intersectoral participation of policy-makers, program planners and extension workers. Under the new decentralization policy of the government, every attempt is made to involve regional colleges, training institutes and applied research agencies.
DTRC has its own computer laboratory equipped with some personal computers and a server system. At present, the laboratory is in operation with ten of its personal computers ranging from IMB to 16MB memory sizes, from 80286 to pentium 133 MHZ and the storage capacity fiom40 MB to 1.6 GB hard disk on each of the machines. Some of the PCs in the computer laboratory are connected together on Local Area Network. Besides, the laboratory has accommodated a good number of personal application software and demographic/statistical software including the POPL1NE CD-ROM.
In addition to the most valuable collections of documents and literature at the IDR Documentation Center, various libraries and documentation centers within AAU and those of Government Departments and International Organizations in Addis Ababa are accessible to the students, the staff and the researchers with a tremendous amount of secondary data and literature for their research works. DTRC is also connected to the Internet.
The list of staff members associated with the Center, is given below:
DTRC has its own secretary, Ms. Ayni Umer, and financial, administrative, reproduction and logistic/transport staff are provided by IDR.
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