geographic information activities at ECA headquarters in Addis Ababa. Harnessing Information for Development is one of six core programs of ECA, and geographic information is a part of the Development Information Services Division (DISD). In addition to supporting the regional centers and the five other core program areas of ECA, DISD activities include advisory services, developing inventories and databases, and organizing conferences and meetings. Since 1963 the ECA has organized a number of U.N. Cartographic Conferences, which in 1999 became part of the activities of the Committee on Development Information (CODI). This committee provides policy and technical guidance for the implementation of the core program on information for development, and these recommendations are passed on to the Conference of African Ministers of Planning and Development.
In 1995, the FAO initiated the Africover project (Chapter 6) in response to national requests for assistance in obtaining reliable, geographically referenced information on natural resources for use in early warning systems, forest and rangeland monitoring, catchment management, and biodiversity