A recent capacity-building exercise conducted in Nigeria trained a multidisciplinary team of researchers in the use of remote sensing in their respective areas of work. Remote sensing technology – a rapid and efficient approach to estimate croplands, cropping intensity, land use and land cover changes – has several applications in agricultural research.

The sessions involved introduction of the concepts of remote sensing, Geographical Information System (GIS) and Google Earth Engine (GEE), along with several applications for which these modern tools are used for agriculture at ICRISAT. The participants received hands-on training on using these technologies, and performed a ground data collection exercise. The use of remote sensing imagery for land use/land cover mapping and monitoring using time series data was highlighted.

Additionally, participants learned about spatial modeling using multiple sources of spatial information, especially the inclusion of socio-economic factors, for identification of suitable watershed intervention sites. Participants were provided with copies of recommended reading material and relevant published papers.

The training “Applications of Remote Sensing in Semi-Arid Tropics (SAT) using machine learning algorithms and Spectral Matching Techniques (SMTs)” was held at the Centre for Dryland Agriculture (CDA), Bayero University Kano, Nigeria during 26–30 August 2019, in collaboration with the CDA. Twenty-five participants attended the course.

Dr Murali Krishna Gumma, Head – GIS and Remote Sensing Lab, ICRISAT;  Dr Anthony Whitbread, Research Program Director – Innovation Systems for the Drylands, ICRISAT; Dr Bhavani Pinjarla and Mr Pranay Panjala from RS/GIS Lab; Dr Hakeem Ajeigbe,  Country Representative -Nigeria, ICRISAT; Prof Jibrin M Jibrin and Dr Murtala  M Badamasi, CDA, Nigeria were involved in making this course possible as part of capacity building in geospatial tools.

The activity was undertaken as part of the CGIAR Research Program on Water, Land and Ecosystems (WLE), and Grain Legumes and Dryland Cereals (GLDC).

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