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Home > Basin > Nile > Nile Basin Focal Projects (PN59)

Full Project Title: Nile Basin Focal Project (PN59)


The Nile Basin experiences widespread poverty, lack of food security, and land and water degradation. Because poverty is linked to access to water for crop, fish and livestock based livelihoods, improving access to water and increasing agricultural water productivity can potentially contribute substantially to poverty reduction.

The major goal of the Nile Basin Focal project is to identify high potential investments that reduce poverty yet reverse trends in land and water degradation. This is done through the implementation of six interlinked work packages allowing us to examine water availability, access, use, productivity, institutions and their linkages to poverty. Important in the Nile BFP is knowledge management and the uptake of results for ultimate impact.

Research Highlights

Research Highlights

  • The findings showed that more large-scale irrigation is possible, but not at the levels planned. It also showed that coordinated planning is absolutely necessary to expand irrigated land and manage the entire river to enhance overall economic water productivity gains.
  • There is scope for improving economic water productivity through enhanced aquaculture and livestock practices in all areas. Aquaculture in the Nile delta is booming, and demonstrates high water productivity while using drainage water flows. Aquaculture is possible in other parts of the basin, but is largely an untapped opportunity.
  • Given that rain-fed and pastoral systems serve most of the area and a host more poor people, and that there are limits on the scope for large scale irrigation, the largest investment opportunity is to focus on rain-fed areas. Here water management practices such as small-scale irrigation have high potential.
  • New insights on poverty, water related risks and vulnerability including mapping of these are provided for the Nile Basin. Deep poverty concentration is linked to rain-fed, agro pastoralist and pastoralist areas, while those with improved water access have lower poverty.
Project Outcomes

Project Outcomes

  • Collaboration for dissemination of knowledge and sharing of data between basin institutions.
  • Improved data sharing will avoid duplication of research efforts, and ensure results are easily accessible and commonly available for the Nile Basin countries. These can then be used to further understanding of key basin issues. It will also have the benefit of direct application of generated results in to practice.
  • Transfer of the developed model and developed results is agreed, so that NBI uses the results directly for comparison with consultants based results.
Publications and Outputs

To view all outputs from project PN59 visit our document repository.

Selected Publications and Outputs

  1. Abd El Nassir Khidr M. Osman (MSc degree Civil Engineering University of Sudan for Science and Technology) Impact of Policy Changes on the Performance and Water Productivity of Gezira Scheme – Part 1; Biophysics and water productivity (final)
  2. Awadalla, Sirein S; September 2010. Literature Review on Sudd Wetland: Hydrology and Water Resources. MIT, Cambridge, Massachusetts
  3. Awulachew, S.B., McCartney, M., Steenhuis, T, Ahmed, A.A. 2008. A review of hydrology, sediment and water resource use in the Blue Nile Basin. Colombo, Sri Lanka: International Water Management Institute (IWMI) 81p. (IWMI Working Paper 131)
  4. Cascao, A.E. (2009), Institutional analysis of Nile Basin Initiative: What worked, what did not work and what are the emerging options? Report submitted to International Water Management Institute as a part of Nile Basin Focal Project.
  5. Danso, George K. 2009. Economic Incentive Based Approaches for Transboundary Water Management under Cooperative Agreements: a case study of Blue Nile River Basin. PhD Thesis, University of Oregon (Draft only).
  6. Demise, S.S., Awulachew, S.B. and Molden, D. (in review). Biophysical Classification for Efficient Water Resources Management: Hydronomic Zones of the Nile Basin.
  7. Erkossa, T., Awulachew S. B. and Denekew, A. (in review). Agricultural Productivity of the Upper Blue Nile Basin Farming systems.
  8. Everisto Mapedza ,T. Tafesse, A. Haileslassie, Seleshi Bekele Aulachew. 2009. Benefit sharing and Architecture of Transboundary Water Institutions: a Mechanism for Sustainable Water Governance in the Blue Nile. Report submitted to International Water Management Institute as a part of Nile Basin Focal Project.
  9. Gamal, K.A.E.M. 2009. Impact of policy and institutional changes on livelihood of farmers in Gezira scheme of Sudan, MS thesis submitted to University of Gezira, Sudan and study supported by International Water Management Institute as a part of Nile Basin Focal Project (Final).
  10. Iyob, B., I. Fischhendler, M. Giordano and A.T. Wolf. 2009. From water sharing and cost sharing to benefit sharing principle: Implications to the Nile basin. PhD student, Department of Geosciences, Oregon State University (unfinished).
Final Report
Project Partners

Project Partners


Project Lead

Project Lead


For more information on Phase 1 outputs please contact Udana Ariyawansa.