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Earth Observation for Sustainable Development – the water case

DHI GRAS to lead ESA project on large-scale exploitation of satellite data in support of water resource management and sustainable development

Satellite Earth Observation (EO) technology has a tremendous potential to inform and facilitate international development work. Since 2008, the European Space Agency (ESA) has worked together with International Financing Institutions (IFIs) and their client states to harness the benefits of EO in their operations and resources management

EO4SD — Earth Observation for Sustainable Development — is an ESA initiative started in spring 2016 and focusing on three top-priority international development issues i.e. [i] urban development, [ii] agriculture and rural development as well as [iii] water resource management. The overall objective is to achieve a step increase in the uptake of satellite-based information in the IFIs regional and global programs within these three domains.

A consortium led by DHI GRAS has been selected to carry out the EO4SD project on water resource management, aiming at delivering EO services in response to stakeholder requirements for water resources monitoring and management at local to basin scales. The first phase (i.e. year one) of the project is dedicated to stakeholder’s engagement, requirements consolidation and product testing and with the second phase (i.e. years two and three) focusing on information production, delivery and capacity building.

Ultimately the project will provide Earth Observation demonstrations on a large-scale in Africa (Sahel, Africa Horn and Zambezi), Asia (Myanmar and Lower Mekong) and Latin America (Altiplano), and within water related operations of major IFI’s including World Bank, Asian Development Bank and Inter-American Development Bank.


For this project DHI GRAS have assembled a high profile team of experts in Earth Observation, water resource management and operational development assistance including Geoville (Austria), Satelligence (Netherlands), eLEAF (Netherlands), Starlab (Spain), DHI (Denmark) as well as ITC (Netherlands) and adelphi (Germany).
For further information please contact project lead Christian Tottrup ( A dedicated project website and portal will be launched later.