Project Title: Data-Driven Decision Support for Improved Water Security in East Africa
Lead Institution: Purdue University, USA
Translation Partner for Kenya: Resource Plan Ltd 

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 Surface and ground water availability in East Africa varies substantially with time and across subregions. Changes in climate, land use/cover and  management are key factors impacting on the integrity of water resources. Yet water-related data are generally insufficient, unavailable, or inaccessible for planning, effective decision-making and management of the resource. This project thus seeks water information which is processed using hydrological models, then packaged and deployed making it Findable, Accessible, Interoperable and Reusable (FAIR) in accordance with open data FAIR Guiding Principles  (Wilkinson et al, 2016).About the projectThis is a two-year research and translation project which commenced in October 2020. The project addresses water security as a priority and use of data in decision support systems. It is focused on three sub-watersheds in East Africa, namely; Sasumua river watershed in Kenya, Simiyu river watershed in Tanzania; and Murchison Bay watershed in Uganda. The overall goal of the project is to provide water information, data access and decision support to improve water resources (quantity, quality) management and, ultimately, water security in the study areas in East Africa. It seeks to determine the current and potential future states of water resources in the region with regard to water budgets, quality, quantity and impacts of climate change shocks on water availability and use. The main Objectives include:

  • Develop a broad dataset describing trends and current and future states of water resources (quantity and quality) in the study region;
  • Provide results, data, and base model parameters in such a way that these are easily discoverable, accessible, ready to use, and free; and
  • Provide training to water managers, policy-makers and other water resources personnel on the use and interpretation of the results, data, and other materials developed through this project.

The project uses a combination of existing climate data, rainfall data and modeling approaches using the Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) to conduct analysis. All partners were involved from the onset including research planning and the design, development, and packaging of project products. The translation partners actively engage in the project including contributing ideas, seeking data and  engaging stakeholder meetings, field visits and webinars. The project is lead and implemented by highly qualified experts, who include the following:


Project Implementers/ Research Leads

Prof. Margaret W. Gitau – Purdue University, USA
Dr. Daniel N. Moriasi – USDA-ARS Grazinglands Research Laboratory, USA
Dr. Nicholas Kiggundu – Makerere University, Uganda
Dr. Subira Eva Munishi – University of Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania

Research Translation Partners

Prof. Bancy M. Mati, Resource Plan (Kenya)
Dr. Victor Kongo – Global Water Partnership Tanzania (GWP-TZ), Tanzania
Mr. James Kisekka – Stichting Aidenvironment (RAIN, Uganda), Uganda

For more about this project, see other presentations and documents in this portal.

Prof. Eng. Bancy Mati Laser Pulse Project Translation Partner for Kenya

Prof. Eng. Bancy Mati is a leading expert in water management and Director at Resource Plan Ltd, a leading consulting firm based in Nairobi., Kenya. She is also Professor at the Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT). Prof. Mati holds a PhD degree in Agricultural Engineering, Food Production and Rural Land Use from Cranfield University; MSc. in Land and Water Management and BSc. in Agricultural Engineering (Nairobi). She is a registered Consulting Engineer. She has previously worked with ICRISAT, as Programme Manager of Improved Management of Agricultural Water in Eastern & Southern Africa (IMAWESA), and with International Institute (IWMI). She is a serious consultant, and has consulted for WFP, FAO, IFAD, UNDP, World Bank, IWMI, CoSAI, Sida, AGRA, NEPAD, African Union, AfDB, CLASP, ILRI, ICRAF, ASARECA, EAC and MENR.

Prof. Mati serves on several Boards and is on the Board of Management of the Upper Tana Nairobi Water Fund and the Steering Committee of Kenya Water for Industry Association (KWIA). In addition, she is the founder Chairperson of the Association of Irrigation Acceleration Platform (AIAP). She has previously served on the Steering Committee of the UN High Level Panel of Experts on Food Security and Nutrition (HLPE), the Advisory Board of the United Nations University’s UNU-FLORES; the National Biosafety Authority, the Engineers Board of Kenya, and the Board of Global Water Partnership (GWP) among others. Prof. Eng. Mati is  an active researcher, trainer, development worker, Prof. Mati is dedicated technical writer with over 170 publications variously in books, book chapters, refereed journal papers, consultancy reports and conference proceedings and is widely quoted (Google Scholar Citations Index 4447). She is passionate about best practices in water resources management and has dedicated her life championing this cause.