On 13 January, the project ‘Integrated Deprivation Area Mapping System for Displacement Durable Solutions and Socioeconomic Reconstruction in Khartoum, Sudan’ (IDeAMapSudan), started with their first workshop. The workshop was an open and transparent conversation between policy-makers, practitioners, academics and civil society on shared urban challenges.
The day started with keynote speeches from the CEO of the Sudan Urban Development Think Tank (SUDTT) Eng. Abdelhafiz Abdelmoniem, Mr Sjoerd Smit, Deputy Head of Mission at the Embassy of the Netherlands in Khartoum, their excellencies Mr Hashim Ibnauf, Minister of Infrastructure and Transport and Ms Lina Elshiekh Minister of Labor and Social Development and Dr Monika Kuffer from the University of Twente. All noted the project’s focus on building local institutional capacity and wide inter-agency collaboration towards a more inclusive and just urban Sudan.
Following the keynotes, the partners at the Faculty of Geo-Information Science and Earth Observation at the University of Twente (ITC), Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB), and the African Population & Health Research Centre (APHRC) elaborated on earth observation and the need for earth observation data sharing by Ms Charlotte Flasse and Dr Caroline Gevaert. All partners shared their experiences from previous works with insightful case studies, for example, where the mapping of deprived areas were utilized for health monitoring in Kenya (by Dr Caroline Kabaria and Mr Onyambu) and Senegal (Ms Sabine Vanhuysse).
Then, the project members zoomed into the Sudanese context. “We sketched out how IDeaMapSudan is set up and how communities and stakeholders will be able to access and interact with the ‘Integrated Deprivation Area Mapping System’ resulting from the project”, says Monika Kuffer. Finally, a vibrant and dynamic discussion, among the diverse stakeholders present, explored an inventory of existing datasets of deprived areas and the pilot areas considered, including an interactive conversation on the localization of mapping indicators and identifying data gaps. Ms Inas Mokhtar (local coordinator) and Ms Maysoon Badi (SUDTT) concluded the workshop on the importance of data for evidence-based policy-making.
IDeaMapSudan is funded by the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs under the Orange Knowledge Program managed by Nuffic Global Development. It aims to develop a community-led geospatial database for mapping deprived urban areas, that will support policy-makers in identifying durable solutions for displacement towards socio-economic reconstruction in Khartoum.
Together with local governments, civil society organizations and communities, the project provides training on the use of digital maps produced from satellite imagery to map urban deprived areas, and link the geospatial data collected with community-based data and data from capacity and vulnerability assessments. This creates an understanding of displacement challenges and opportunities associated with urban development, and opens up possibilities for knowledge-based policy-making for socio-economic reconstruction in urban Sudan.
For more information about the project, please see the website of IDeaMapSudan.