Sitemap | Contact | Teams workspace
Logo of the comprehensive assessment for agriculture   Header visual
Building and sharing the knowledge base on Water, Food and Environment
Placeholder for layout
Placeholder for layout
Main navigation:
Home | About the CA | Synthesis | Research Projects | Participants | Publications | Newsroom
Placeholder for layout
Placeholder for layout
Placeholder for layout
You are here :
Placeholder for layout
Placeholder for layout
Further navigation :
Working papers
Workshops / Conferences
Tools and resources
Placeholder for layout Placeholder for layout

Global Irrigated Area Mapping

Placeholder for layout

This project is being implemented to achieve precise understanding of actual irrigated area in terms of crop area cultivated under irrigation in each season of the year.  This will give a better understanding of the extent and intensity of land and water use for food production, which in turn will allow better forecasts of alternative strategies to meet future global food needs.  This work revolves around remote sensing, which potentially offers a way of mapping irrigated area globally with more precision.

The project is investigating alternative means of identifying irrigated area using low cost, coarse resolution imagery (MODIS) where possible. It investigates different technologies at different scales to address the highly varied nature of irrigation in different agro-climatic zones, where the scale of irrigation itself varies from large contiguous (public) irrigation systems to small highly fragmented land units. The project will provide comparative assessments of techniques, their accuracy and precision and their costs. The study is based in Pakistan, India and Sri Lanka, plus a site in the Chao Phraya Delta, Thailand.  Southern and Eastern Africa have also been identified as possible study sites.

Collaborators: IWMI, FAO Aquastat (Rome), FAO Remote Sensing (Rome) STAR Program, AIT (Bangkok), IWMI-Pakistan, IWMI-India, Yale University (US)

Duration: 2002 to 2004 (extended to 2005)

weblink to map:

Interactive map:


Project Proposal - [PDF 2.31MB]
Global Irrigated Area Mapping at IWMI – where we are now and where we go next,




International Workshop on Global Irrigated Area Mapping - September 25-27, 2006, Colombo, Sri Lanka



Canisius, Francis XJ, Hugh Turral, Fusion Technique to Extract Detail Information from Moderate Resolution Data for Global Scale Image Map Production, proceedings of the 30th International Symposium on Remote Sensing of Environment held in Honolulu, Hawai on 10-14 Nov 2003 (Word)

Droogers, Peter, Global Irrigated Area Mapping: Overview and Recommendations, IWMI Working Paper No. 36, 2002 (PDF)

Honda, Kyoshi, Amor VM Ines, A Numerical Experiment in Assimilating Agricultural Practices in a Mixed Pixel Environment using Genetic Algorithms, proceedings of the 24th Asian Conference of Remote Sensing and 2003 International Symposium on Remote Sensing held in Korea on 3-7 Nov 2003 (Word)

Kamthonkiar, Daroonwan, Kiyoshi Honda, Hugh Turral, Nitin K Tripathi, Vilas Wuwongse, Time Series Analysis of Spot Vegetation Instrument Data for Identifying Agricultural Pattern of Irrigated and Non-irrigated Rice Cultivation in Suphanburi Province, Thailand, proceedings of the 24th Asian Conference of Remote Sensing and 2003 International Symposium on Remote Sensing held in Korea on 3-7 Nov 2003 (Word)


Other Outputs:

IWMI Global Map of Irrigated Area, 1999. Version alpha-release (PDF)

Windows compliant version of the MAXIMUM LOCAL FITTING algorithm for time series analysis of MODIS, SPOT Vegetation etc. [software developed by Asian Institute of Technology]

IWMI-Data Storehouse Pathway [DSP: archive for all RS and GIS data at IWMI: major spin-off from GIAM and funded by it]


For further information write to