About the GDRC:
Frequently Asked Questions

About GDRC itself:
Can you give me more information on GDRC?
It started in a very humble way, as a 'homepage' focussing on just one issue - Informal Credit Markets (ICM) - in April 1995. Since then more programmes were added, and the ICM programme itself became the "Virtual Library on Microcredit". It has also evolved from a university-based website to a full-fledged independent policy think tank over the years. Currently, it has 15 programmes, arranged around five spheres - environment, urban, community, economy and information. Also see the Introduction and history

How is GDRC funded?
Mostly through private/personal funds. GDRC has not sought any external funds, and does not provide funding to external entities.

Who are GDRC's staff members?
With a coordinator (See email address below) managing the day-to-day functioning of GDRC, much of its actual research work is carried out by a network of more than 250 'virtual fellows' located all over the world who contribute time and knowledge to create and develop the various programmes of GDRC. See current list of GDRC's Virtual Fellows and Institutional Partners.

Where is GDRC's offices located?
With its secretariat located in Kobe, Japan, most of GDRC's activities and interactions take place on the internet, through its vast network of virtual fellows and institutional partners. If you need to contact the Coordinator, please see the contact page.

About GDRC's programmes:
How were the themes of GDRC identified?
Different themes evolved differently. For example, through a series of face-to-face brain-storming sessions, a pioneering group of young urban planners started off the urban environmental management (UEM) programme. This gradually grew to include other themes based on interests, experiences and priorities identified by the group. Other subthemes were added later as research was carried out and current thinking evolved.

How is a particular theme's pages built?
Through several ways: (a) primarily through research work of GDRC's virtual fellows (b) participation in conferences/workshops, (c) searching the internet (d) collaborating with other organizations/institutions. Obviously, this is an ongoing and dynamic process, and GDRC is also dependent on its many daily online visitors to provide comments, suggestions and contributions to expand a theme.

Is it possible to start a new programme?
Yes. While the original 15 themes will not be expanded (see drop down menu above), it is broad enough to incorporate within it, any number of subthemes and special features. Do have a look a the sitemap for an idea of the range of issues included within the 15 programmes.

About GDRC's activities:
Does GDRC provide funding?
No. GDRC is not a funding or grant-making organization, and focuses rather on providing strategic and informational help to entities primarily in developing countries of Asia, Africa, Latin America, and Eastern/Central Europe.

Are training sessions or seminars organized?
Currently GDRC assists training sessions organized by other organizations. In the future, this will also be done online. GDRC will soon launch an e-learning sister portal called 'Cyber-GDRC' which will be a mechanism to package info available on the various theme pages of GDRC through a series of online courses.

Can I/we collaborate with GDRC?
YES, of course! Both individuals and organizations/institutions are welcome to collaborate. Individuals can become 'Virtual Fellows' and groups can become 'Institutional Partners' More details of the format of collaboration are available.

Can I contribute an article or report?
Again, YES! Contributions, including comments and suggestions, are most welcome. GDRC has grown to become what it is today, primarily through such contributions. Please do contact the coordinator's email below for more information and ideas.