The Kenya Agricultural Research Institute’s (KARI) GIS lab provides GIS services to Kenyan researchers involved in natural resources management and development, including for agriculture. The lab staff includes highly-trained individuals with specialized degrees in cartography, remote sensing and other areas directly related to geographic information. They are, however, hampered by aging GIS infrastructure (server, monitors, etc.), limited functionally expired or trial versions of proprietary software and limited opportunities and resources to attend in-service training that would enable them to become proficient users of the freely available, open source software. This grant will allow the staff to obtain training in the use of open source software. Complementary investments in upgrading the lab’s infrastructure will enable the lab staff to overcome problems with aging equipment. These investments will enable them to generate more timely, accurate and detailed land resources information for the research and development community. The switch to open-source software will address the challenges associated with cost of and limitations of the proprietary software licenses, thereby enhancing efficiency in the GIS laboratory.
Upgrade the skills of university students in the practical use of open source GIS software and aid in bridging the knowledge-application gap that exists between theory and practice of many Kenyan students.Generate GIS products and location-based information for CCRP projects in Kenya with students, GIS lab staff, and CCRP project staff.Target areas will support better decision support in key stages of the project life cycle, such as scoping, feasibility evaluation, implementation and monitoring and evaluation (M&E).