The Online Reporting System (ORS) is a new state-of-the-art electronic platform to revolutionize reporting under Multilateral Environment Agreements (MEA). The system has been developed by UNEP-WCMC and the Secretariat of the African-Eurasian Waterbird Agreement (UNEP-AEWA) with support from the Norwegian Government to UNEP. The ORS will help national authorities to ensure that their reports provide the best basis for decision-making; and to provide relevant high quality information in a timely and efficient manner so that the best decisions are taken to safeguard biodiversity.
The ORS is designed as a flexible tool for the creation of online national reports and is especially customized to the needs of MEAs and their online national reporting processes. The ORS allows MEA Secretariats to design and quickly update their national reporting templates. It allows MEA staff to make the changes to the templates directly and requires no programming by the MEA Secretariat. There are many options for customizing individual questionnaires; with different question types, dependencies, flexible re-ordering of questions and sophisticated looping questions as well as filtering options.
At the respondent level, the system allows for delegation of sections or questions by designated national respondents, meaning that an MEA Focal Point can assign a section or a specific question of a given national report to those national experts most suitable to answer the selected part of the report. First used in 2012, the new AEWA Online National Reporting Template even includes a looping section with photos of almost all of the 255 waterbird species covered by AEWA. Other MEAs considering use of ORS include: The Convention on Migratory Species and its daughter agreements; the Ramsar Convention and the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora.
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