LVB Water Information System


Purpose and structure

The general purpose of the planned Lake Victoria Basin Water Information System (LVB-WIS) is to support policy measures and local investment decisions for the long-term sustainable development of the Lake Victoria Basin. Use of the LVB-WIS will result in increased awareness, better informed problem analysis and increased support for investment decisions. The LVB-WIS concept consists of a database platform linked with IWRM models. The built-in Knowledge Hub provides access to relevant IWRM data, maps, publications, literature and other information.

The LVB-WIS shall have two major building blocks (frameworks): the Nile Basin Decision Support System (NB DSS), and Delft-FEWS. Both will be connected by a PostGreSQL database. Information on the NB DSS can be found at Delft-FEWS is a specialized database and modelling software with built-in IWRM functionality. Information on Delft-FEWS can be found at Besides this, external models (e.g. for water quality, flooding, drought) may be linked to the LVB-WIS. NB DSS and Delft-FEWS are frameworks onto which modelling tools are connected.

The schematic setup of the LVB-WIS is shown in the diagram. The full and established functionality of the NB DSS will be available, while the linking with Delft-FEWS will provide the flexibility to adapt the LVB-WIS. It allows linking of additional (water quality) model tools, implementing different user interfaces for the different user groups, and sharing data through a website using web services. The Knowledge Hub is an online portal for non-data information on IWRM including a library of relevant documents and project reports.

LVB-WIS schematic diagram


Shared Facility

The LVB-WIS is central to the ambitions of LVBC to become a Centre of Excellence in IWRM for the Lake Victoria Basin. The network that needs to be established and strengthened for data and information flow to and from the LVB-WIS could firmly establish the exchange of information and knowledge, leading to the joint knowledge creation and mutual strengthening that is an essential part of basin wide cooperation. Collaboration and sharing of data, information, knowledge and even resources is key, and LVBC will lead this challenge for the Lake Victoria Basin.

The LVB-WIS is managed by LVBC and therefore it is a shared facility of the LVB Partner States. LVBC is the regional institution from where the LVB-WIS is initiated and developed, within a framework of co-operation with relevant Partner State Institutions and the NBI. The constellation of LVB-WIS partners, users and providers is shown in the diagram.

LVB-WIS Partners, Users and Providers


LVB-WIS Knowledge Portal

The concept of the K-Hub was established. It is accessible through the following link:


Open-Source Satellite Datasets

Open-source satellite datasets (OSSD), their suitability for the LVB-WIS and processing methods to transform raw data into database readable formats and expressive maps were investigated. OSSD can bolster traditional “in-situ” collected datasets for a range of IWRM applications.

OSSD used are Sentinel 1 - 3, SRTM, Aster, Landsat 8 and Alos. Relevant outputs so far include:

  • Digital terrain models with a raster resolution of 30mx30m.

  • Flood inundation maps and sub-catchments of LVB, based on above terrain model.

  • Normalised Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) maps used e.g. for tracking of macrophytes and algae blooms over time.

  • Soil Water Index (SWI), to be used for run-off modelling, drought stresses and climate impacts

  • Lake and surface temperatures.

  • Normalised Water Index to be used for estimating flood extends.

  • Natural colour images with a raster resolution of up to 10mx10m.

  • Population density maps (see example below).

  • Maps for indicative water quality parameters, derived from sediment plumes and empiric formulas, for total phosphorus concentration.

  • Land cover and land use (changes) used to track for example deforestation and risk assessment for soil erosion, flooding and resulting nutrient discharge.


A dataset sources matrix is maintained, which documents already utilised, as well as additionally identified open-source data sources. This dataset matrix may proof useful to complement the LVB-WIS database, besides the data that will be provided by the respective Partner State institutions.

Current Status

The Functional Design of the LVB-WIS was completed in 2021. The first phase of the database platform establishment and trainings was conducted from October 2021 up to March 2022. The second phase is now under preparation. The tender documents for the required services have been prepared.

Five National WIS exchange sessions were conducted in the Partner States. Each of the 5 Partner State Basin Institutions presented their data portal, the data collection and analysis systems, the use of specific software, type of reports. Options for integration with the LVB-WIS were explored but not yet concluded. Relevant issues and support needs were stated.

As a follow up to the National WIS sessions, a regional workshop is being planned with experts from each of the Basin Institutions to jointly prepare for the next steps in the configuration and establishment of the WIS. The implementation of the second phase of LVB-WIS establishment is planned to take place from September 2022 onwards.