In the face of the impressive information systems now being planned and implemented for industry-wide data banks and governmental data integration, the network of non-governmental organizations is in a position of weakness. Each non-governmental organization, because it is required to have a competency in a specific area of interest to serve its purpose, builds data-banks, sometimes fully computerized, of facts and figures and other information resources that it considers necessary to have on hand.
Inevitably, organizations duplicate each other in these efforts and this contributes to the proliferation of reports generated from each data-bank. In addition, the effort going into the building of proprietary information systems detracts from their achieving comprehensiveness or breadth, as well as from achieving depth of necessary detail. The isolated climate in which these organizational efforts are conducted is conducive to information hoarding; an unwillingness to share any output that the information system can produce. Thus the net result of these attitudes is incomplete and inefficient multiple information systems that stand alone unlinked by computer telecommunications or cooperative research efforts.
NGO information duplication and inefficiency occurs in almost every vital area: peace research and armaments statistics, health, population growth, labour and employment, economic data, social justice, and industry and trade sectors, for example.