Capacities required for providers and participants
BOX 1: EXAMPLE OF A PORTAL
Tamil Nadu Agricultural University (TNAU) Agritech Portal (www.agritech.tnau.ac.in) has been catering to the needs of farmers, extensionists, and other stakeholders in agriculture and allied sectors since 2009. It offers a diverse range of information from crop-related or weather information, to daily market prices, schemes and programmes for farmers, daily news, events, publications supported by multimedia, expert systems, and much more. The portal can be accessed in Tamil and English and offers a keyword search facility.
The costs will vary depending on the specifications of the portal, hosting platform, technology used (open source or commercial), quality of the portal, support, and maintenance. The main costs are hiring a developer, creating a basic website (300–2,000), and CMS integration (US$2,000–10,000). A simple portal will cost US$10,000– 25,000 and multi-site portals with multiple portlets around US$25,000–60,000. There will also be extra charges for advanced features like diagnostics. A web portal with chat facilities and customer support will need a dedicated web master (US$1,000–2,000 per month).