Information, information management and governance
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Abstract This paper makes the link between information, its management and governance. It explores the literature in an attempt to gain an appreciation of what constitutes governance and extracts from that search a number of views. The paper is built in part around those views that in fact converge. Governance needs to be informed continually by information flows that are examined, digested and evaluated against the intended direction of government policy. The mechanics of establishing an effective information system are discussed against the background of an existing system that is unequal to the contemporary demands for information to inform governance. The paper views appropriate and relevant data as a necessary input into the process of governance, but does not focus on that process. The importance of networking of both people and computer hardware is observed. The paper observes the importance of networking among people in the interest of the national good. The continued existence of islands of information is viewed as being undesirable because of the inherent duplication of effort, information and incomparability of data purporting to measure the same phenomenon. A recommended way forward is the Â'horizontal approach' which advocates a re-design of the information architecture. It finds a measure of support in the recent data dissemination initiative of the International Monetary Fund (IMF); and the World Bank. The paper recognises the effort of the IMF and the World Bank to have countries document their methodologies and place quality delimiters on their data. This effort is applauded.