From 8th to 15th of March 2004, BRIMA agency- Macedonian member of Gallup International conducted research on the following topic:
NGOs in Macedonia related to their ICT equipment and their views on the development and use of the information and communication technologies in the country.
The research was conducted among 161 NGOs in 7 cities in Macedonia.

By NGOs profile ten kinds of specific oriented groups were determined:

• Education
• Women organizations
• Human rights
• Economy
• Ecology
• Humanitarian organizations
• Culture
• Agriculture
• Corruption
• Youth, children

The distribution per cities stands as follows:

• Veles – total 23 NGOs
• Kichevo– total 22 NGOs
• Kumanovo – total 17 NGOs
• Prilep – total 24 NGOs
• Skopje– total 32 NGOs
• Tetovo– total 19 NGOs
• Shtip – total 24 NGOs

For the purpose of the research NGOs presidents (managers) and vice-presidents (or members) were interviewed, i.e. people directly involved in reaching decisions for providing equipment, and for development and use of the information and communication technologies.

The following has been identified by interviewers and direct and back-check supervisions:

– Some of the NGOs presidents have low knowledge level of computer skills or do not have knowledge at all and had serious problem in answering the questionnaire. They have to consult the IT stuff in their organization;

– Most of the NGOs presidents did not even understand the terminology used in the questionnaire such as discussion groups, multimedia, installing a system for project management over Internet and installing a system for team work over Internet, open software, etc.;

– Some presidents stated they were familiar with the open software, in order to make an impression, although they were not;

– In regard to the question on illegality of the software they use, some of them gave no information or considered their software being legal due to the fact that their personal computers (PC) were donated by other international organizations;

– Some of them do not have PCs (or Internet) at all in their offices, so they are using the computer services of NGO support centers established by Foundation Open Society Institute Macedonia in the city they live in. They regret about this, but at the same time they expressed their great appreciation to those centers for the support they provide;

– There are big NGOs (with several hundreds of members and volunteers) with no office and no need of such facility, since they have been using Internet for online meetings from home or from other places. On the other hand, there are NGOs which regard the lack of facilities as a problem in realization of their projects;

– In the initial version of the sample there were NGO with no PCs (Internet) in their offices and they were using their private PCs. By this they did not meet one of the basic requirements and therefore were replaced with another NGOs;

– We came across few big NGOs in Skopje which are active part time (during election period or other democratic processes), but did not work when this survey was conducted, (with no office facilities and PCs (Internet)).

There were few NGOs that refuse to participate in the survey. Most of the refusals are recorded in the first phase, during establishing contact. Some of the refusals were given on grounds of ‘having no time’ or not being informed enough to answer the questions. Also, there was an NGO that had bad experience with previous interviews.

April 09th, 2004