The International Nuclear Information System (INIS), a unit of the IAEA which maintains the world´s largest database of nuclear information, is about to turn the page on what has been quite a busy year.
Over the past twelve months, INIS staff started four new national projects, made nine country visits, and welcomed a new member to its roster.
Four national projects were initiated in Burkina Faso, Kenya, Niger and Uzbekistan. These projects, developed in coordination with the IAEA Department of Technical Cooperation, benefit Member States by allowing scientists, researchers and students to garner access to INIS information resources.
Additionally, three site visits were made to Qatar, Egypt and Uzbekistan, enhancing each country´s participation in the programme. Such visits are typically comprised of lectures regarding INIS operation, training on its systems, promotion of INIS products and outreach, and visits to local universities and libraries.
"The bulk of our work this past year was comprised of helping Member States to derive maximum benefit from INIS to support their country´s nuclear activities," said Taghrid Atieh, INIS Group Leader. "In addition, linking African countries with INIS has been and will continue to form the focus of our activities."
INIS also welcomed the Seychelles as a new Member State in 2007; conducted further site visits to Canada, China, France, India, Korea and Russia; and has scheduled a training seminar in Ghana this December. INIS is also nearing completion on a network-wide survey, with the aim of determining how it can provide further support to its Member States.
In 2008, INIS expects the bulk of its new membership to come from African nations and will look to assist more countries in maximizing the potential of its offerings.
Created in 1969, INIS collects, catalogues and distributes informational products to its Member States on topics related to the peaceful application of nuclear science. The bedrock of INIS´ foundation is the international cooperation among countries and international organizations that comprise its membership.
The two primary products that INIS collates and disseminates are a bibliographic database (a repository of 2.8 million indexed references) and a collection of over 600,000 full-text documents. The informational repositories are constantly updated, accessed by and contributed to by individuals in 118 Member States and 19 international organizations. Access to the INIS database is provided to 350 universities on a complimentary basis.