Home / Actions supported / Projects / A collaborative network to support Earth observation for land monitoring in (...)
Ad hoc support : GEODEV

A collaborative network to support Earth observation for land monitoring in the South

Geoinformation Earth observation Land monitoring Collaborative platform Dissemination of knowledge
Export to PDF


In many countries of the Global South, the importance of up-to-date geospatial information to support public agricultural policy is amplified by the fact that national statistical systems, usually based on inventories, are often inadequate. These countries are nevertheless struggling to produce this geospatial information. Training centres in spatial technologies and university courses in remote sensing and geomatics are in short supply and are concentrated in just a few countries. Even where these centres exist, access to satellite imagery and processing tools has failed to increase the use of geospatial information and data. Despite the numerous projects deployed since the late 2000s, services based on remote sensing data are still limited. The development of large international initiatives in the domain of agriculture attests to the fact that there is an urgent need to further mobilize remote sensing data for public decision making. These initiatives concern the satellite image distribution and production of derived off-the-shelf land products (e.g., GEO-GLAM for the world; Copernicus for Europe; THEIA for France). However, currently, these initiatives cannot totally fulfill the local needs for better agricultural and land management and planning. The democratisation of access to data and tools is real, but their use is linked to a complex, rapidly evolving technology.

In this context, to increase the visibility of Earth observation potential and facilitate its use, in 2016 CIRAD, IRD and CNES have joined forces to set up GEODEV, a Theia Regional Animation (ART) dedicated to Earth observation applications in the Global South territories. The main objective of the ART is to capitalize and disseminate to as many people as possible the skills, methods and tools useful for the knowledge, monitoring and management of territories. To this end, the ART leads and supports a collaborative network gathering partner competence centers called the GeoDEV Network. The network goal is to capacitate and empower actors in the adoption of Earth observation applications and services to better respond to the major global challenges in the monitoring of the environment and territories in the inter-tropical zone.

Currently, GeoDEV network activities mainly consist in 1. carrying and organizing GeoDEV Days (Workshops, Seminaries) gathering partners in France and abroad (Madagascar, Nouvelle Calédonie, Ile de La Réunion, French Guyana, etc.); 2. In developing continuous communication actions through its website (http://www.theia-land.art-geodev.fr/) and other media (news letter, social media, etc.). These media offer, to the registered GeoDEV members, contents related to the spatial observation of territories and environment in the South. The thematic resources on agriculture, forestry and land use are open and accessible; soon new themes (biodiversity, water, health, risks and urban sprawl) will complement the current resources. A section "image catalogs & toolboxes", transversal to the themes, lists a set of satellite imageries available on territories in the South. It directs the user towards tools for visualization, zone extraction and downloading as well as data processing (time series, classifications). Each Theme lists News, Events or documents of interest classified into categories (presentations of products derived from satellite data, links to dedicated web services, documents available for downloading: teaching aids, scientific publications, project sheets, slide shows, etc.). This resources folder is progressively enriched with new contents from the Theia Land Data Center, but also with contributions from the members themselves: content submission forms are available to send and share news or documents of interest within the network. Today, the GeoDEV site is in French; it has more than a hundred registered users, more than half of whom are located in Africa


The objective of this project is twofold: (1) support the organization of a new event to federate and (re)boost the French community around the GeoDEV Network and Platform, and (2) update the GeoDEV website in order to make it a real collaborative tool with international ambitions. This tool will be developed in French, in order to connect better with some of our African partners, and translated later in English and Portuguese.

Project Number : 2100-015

Year : 2021

Type of funding : SP

Project type : PC

Research units in the network : AIDA AMAP ECO&SOLS HORSYS LISAH F&S G-EAU SELMET

Start date :
01 Apr 2021

End date :
31 Mar 2022

Flagship project :

Project leader :

Project leader's institution :

Project leader's RU :

Budget allocated :
12000 €

Total budget allocated ( including co-financing) :
12000 €

Funding :