SERVIR: Connecting Space to Village – Kenya 2014

Where: Regional Center for Mapping of Resources for Development, Nairobi, Kenya.

When: November 4-6, 2014

Workshop Title: “Open source Geospatial data processing for REDD+ Applications

The workshop aimed to equip participants the basics R and to show the range of open source options for geospatial data processing, including specific R packages and other open source softwares, with demonstrations applicable to the REDD+ context.


Workshop attendee Merceline Awuor Ojwala (left) with a colleague during field verification in Marmanet forest, Laikipia County, Kenya. Ojwala is a Technical Officer at the Kenya Department of Resource Surveys and Remote Sensing Kenya. She is a key member of the forest monitoring team, which conducts periodic monitoring of forests in Kenya, reporting on forests’s status to inform decision-making.

The implementation of REDD+ requires countries to be supported in strengthening their technical capacities across a wide range of work areas, from forest inventories to land use mapping. Access to affordable geospatial software and training is key to longer-term sustainability of MRV deliverables for REDD+. Funds to monitor forests and the carbon they contain are still limited, so gaining access to state-of-the-art open-source software for spatial data processing is particularly important for tropical countries but also anyone doing advanced analysis of geospatial data. This technical training workshop was being conducted as part of a NASA-SERVIR funded project “Forest carbon assessment for REDD+ in the East Africa SERVIR region.” It introduced participants to data processing with the “R” software package, focusing on processing spatial data for forest and carbon monitoring and mapping in the context of REDD+. In recent years “R” has added numerous spatial data processing functions that allow one to easily access sophisticated data processing algorithms often unavailable in any other software. At the end of this workshop students managed the fundamentals of using R and many of the spatial data processing functions, and have the foundation for learning more as new capabilities are added to the evolving R data processing archive.

For more information: SERVIR introduces conservation workers in Africa to tools for streamlining their work

SERVIR Africa webpage

View the workshop agenda. (PDF)

View a list of the participants. (PDF)

Comments from participants:

“As a Forestry Department and indeed as a Country, we are in dear need of adopting and developing a useful method to determine GHG emission uncertainty accounting for the REDD+ Projects in Zambia. Therefore, I am looking forward to further learning the use of R in my current assignments in order to contribute positively to providing solutions required for the REDD+ process in Zambia.” Abel Siampale, Zambia Forest Department.

Faith Kagwiria Mutwiri (Kenya Forest Service), a GIS and Remote Sensing expert, says she has gained “great knowledge to do forest monitoring … and advise my country … how to conserve, manage, and sustainably utilize our forest resources. This will help us as a country to achieve our vision 2030 forestry flagships such as increasing forest cover to 10%, conservation and management of water towers for supply of goods and services, and poverty alleviation.”

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Contributing institutions:

WHRC-logo_325     RCMRD_logo     AMNH_CBC_logo     NASA_logo

USAID_logo     servir_logo     KenyaForestService