East African Great Lake Observatory

Lead Research Organisation: University of Nairobi
Department Name: Biological Sciences


The EAGLO project brings together leading scientists in focused research activities and scientific exchange for a two year period. In addition to the PI and Co-I, the research will be supported by partners from leading institutions with experience in climate, limnology, economics and decision support in the African Lakes region. The project will strongly benefit from the past and present participation of project researchers nationally and internationally sponsored research in the region. Project scientists will make new developments in monitoring (in-situ and earth observation), modelling (socio-economic, biogeochemical, hydrological) and management technologies, focusing on regional trends in lake ecosystem dynamics. These tools will enable the simulation of the mutual feedbacks between socio-economic drivers, climate and regional environmental change (eg. trends in watershed and airshed conditions) and ecosystem services. Based on this new understanding of ecosystem resilience, scientists will identify new opportunities for adaptation to improve human well being and reduce regional poverty. Within the project, three linked working groups will perform activities related to research, technological development, scientific exchange and dissemination. 1. Monitoring protocol and technology development: Activities: - development of common protocols for monitoring biological, physical and chemical parameters (incl. definition of temporal and spatial scales for data acquisition). Specifically, creating a common protocol that can be used to compare conditions of lake stratification, primary production, eutrophication, carbon sequestration, trophic networks, etc. - development of regionally valid calibration algorithms for earth observation and analysis approaches for the study of spatio-temporal dynamics of high elevation African lakes using multispectral satellite data (MODIS, MERIS, SeaWiFs). - collaboration with international satellite database archive managers (ESA, NASA, NERC EODC) to increase the availability of calibrated satellite data to African researchers and planners. Expected participants: EAGLO scientists, NGOs and regional environmental agencies, Target audiences: regional scientists, national ministries, international scientific community 2. Regional lake / climate / environmental database Activities: - development of EAGLO.base, a research database protocol and database structure for African lakes data. - link the EAGLO.base protocol and structure to the EIDC Expected participants: EAGLO scientists, regional environmental agencies, EIDC scientists Target audiences: regional scientists, national ministries and policy makers, international scientific community 3. Ecosystem scenario simulation and analysis Activities: - development of scenarios (to 2050) based on trends in resource quality, ecosystem functioning, resource utilisation and climate. - interlinked dynamics will be examine using models developed in present and past projects. Expected participants: EAGLO scientists, national ministries, NGOs Target audiences: national ministries and policy makers, regional scientific community, supranational (AU) policy makers, NGOs An initial workshop, open to project partners and the regional stakeholders and policy makers will be organised in the first year. Development of specific technological and modelling aspects will be organised through a project communication platform and through short term exchanges (<1 month) of project scientists and junior researchers. Each working group (3) will hold a scientific workshop during the second year of the project to consolidate the results produced, ensure the collaborative development of these instruments with stakeholders, and indicate the requirements for further development.
Description The significance of the East African Great Lakes lies in the ecosystem services that they provide to the local and regional communities (water supply, fisheries, waste disposal, transportation, recreation, tourism, energy, ). To address challenges occasioned by climate change and other regional drivers that compromise ecosystem functioning, an ESPA framework project - East African Great Lakes Observatory (EAGLO) - was initiated to develop an inter-basin knowledge exchange and comparative analys
Exploitation Route Common regional database for policy and scenario analysis

Regional scenario analysis tools

Regional lake management framework

Regional lake ecosystem monitoring approach EAGLO website, EAGLO related publications
Sectors Environment

URL http://websibn78.seventyeight.axc.nl/index.php
Description Researchers also developed a community based lake monitoring protocol to respond to policy makers' objectives to provide communities with the capacity to share in the monitoring of the resources on which they depend. Integrated with geographic and temporal data of main environmental drivers, this approach will allow stakeholders to associate changes in the lake ecosystem with key environmental drivers, improving the exchange of knowledge between lake managers. EAGLO partners are identifying funding sources to bring this community monitoring approach to lake communities around East Africa
Sector Cultural,Societal
Impact Types Cultural,Societal

Description EAGLO Workshop December 2010, Kisumu
Policy Influence Type Participation in a national consultation
Description Evidence of impact on policy and practice
Title Geographic database of lake drivers 
Description Specific indicators to monitor the conditions and dynamics of the lakes, lake communities, ecosystem services and environmental drivers were developed by the EAGLO participants over the first year of the project and consolidated in the second. These focused on the information priorities identified by key stakeholders regarding observed and predicted processes of change within lake basins and impacting lake ecosystem management and local population well being. Indicator development and elaboration occurred in the second year of the project and was validated in the second scenario workshop. Geographic information on specific indicators was constructed for 15 Lake Basins, and this has been made available on the project web site 
Type Of Material Database/Collection of data 
Year Produced 2013 
Provided To Others? No  
Description EAGLO 
Organisation East African Great Lakes Observatory (EAGLO)
Country Kenya 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution EAGLO team members have contributed to decision making activities in most major lake management bodies such as the Lake Tanganyika Authority, the Lake Victoria Development Programme, the Nile Basin initiative. Links between regional initiatives such as the Equatorial Africa Deposition Network? (EADN) and EAGLO have been made. Links with global networks such as GLEON, ESA TIGER, and the Globolakes project have been established.
Start Year 2012
Description Partnership with Belgian project (BELSPO) on Change Sensitivity in African Lakes 
Organisation University of Namur
Country Belgium 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution (see http://www.eagles-kivu.be) In this BELSPO project, historical, new insitu and laboratory studies will be combined in data bases of limnological variables, plankton (diversity, biomass and production of phyto- and zooplankton), fish abundance and meteorological data will be completed by sediment archives (biogeochemical and biological proxies) and by remote sensing of phytoplankton biomass and surface hydrological features,to increase our present understanding of ecosystem biodiversity and functioning. Research objectives will: * link atmospheric forcing and the lake's physics: relation between atmospheric conditions and lake temperature and water column structure, aiming to understand/simulate the variability of seasonal mixing processes and forecast long term changes * link physical processes with biological and ecological (e.g. nutrient availability) processes: diversity and biomass of plankton, fate of primary production in the planktonic food web, fish abundance and fisheries yield * predict future changes of ecosystem processes and resources, as a result from fisheries management, exploitation of methane from the deep waters, and climate change (linking global climate to regional climate).
Start Year 2011
Description African Lakes 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact Mzime Ndebele-Murisa, Presented the long-term planning of EAGLOnet at COP 17 in a number of forums one of which was a special session under the African Pavilion that was hosted by the UNFCCCC

COP 17
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2011