Soils4Africa : Soil Information System for Africa

Project identifier 205-SOILS4AFRICA
Project Status ongoing
Start date 2020-06-01
End date 2024-05-31
Roadmap Theme
  • Sustainable intensification: Ecological intensification approaches
  • Sustainable intensification: Soil, water, land and input management
  • Type of Project Applied research project
    Type of Project Development and innovation oriented (research) project
    Programme H2020-EU.
    Keyword soil management; soil health; information technology; climate resilience; carbon sequestration; sustainable agriculture
    Budget 6 697 797
    Main Funder Directorate-General for Research and Innovation (DG RTD) (H2020)
    Coordinator International Soil Reference and Information Centre (ISRIC - World soil information)
  • Wageningen University
  • Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA)
  • Szent Istvan University
  • Agricultural Research Council (ARC)
  • International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA)
  • Interbalkan Environmental Center (I-BEC)
  • Stellenbosch University
  • International Center for Research in Agroforestry / World Agroforestry (ICRAF)
  • Regional Centre for Mapping of Resources for Development (RCMRD)
  • Institut Facultaire des Sciences Agronomiques de Yangambi (IFA)
  • Bureau National des Sols (BUNASOLS)
  • Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization (KALRO)
  • SGS Hungaria
  • Joint Research Centre of the European Commission (JRC)
  • MetaMeta Research
  • Description

    The aim of Soils4Africa is to provide an open-access soil information system with a set of key indicators and underpinning data, accompanied with a methodology for repeated soil monitoring across the African continent. The soil information system will become part of the knowledge and information system of FNSSA and will be hosted by an African institute. Activities are: (i) define use cases and indicators in consultation with stakeholders; (ii) make a functional design of the soil information system; (iii) develop detailed procedures and tools for the field activities based on the LUCAS methodology and collect 20000 soil samples; (iv) develop detailed procedures for laboratory work and analyse the collected soil samples at one reference laboratory located in Africa; and (v) develop the technical infrastructure for the soil information system and serve the results as open data linked with open EO data. The project addresses the work programme of SC 2 in the following ways. First, it contributes to priority 2 (Fostering functional ecosystems) because the soil information system is a tool to target interventions that improve soil quality and provides insight in the impact of these interventions. Secondly, it contributes to priority 1 (Addressing climate change and resilience on land and sea), as the soil information system will contribute to the assessment of carbon losses from soil and the identification of areas with high potential for soil carbon sequestration. Finally, the soil information system provides a platform for the development of sustainable business models by service companies aiming at the development of sustainable food systems, contributing to priority 3 (Boosting major innovations on land and sea). Soils4Africa is linking with relevant H2020 projects and Copernicus on EO data use. It actively connects organizations across Africa and Europe for synergies and promotes an open science approach.