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GDEST 2008 Conference Sessions

Theme 3 - The African Data Stream
Geospatial Data Harmonization and Integration for Running GIS-Based Sustainability-Conscious Agro-Based Projects of the Millennium Challenge Account (MCA) Programs in Ghana
Foster Mensah, University of Ghana, Ghana

Ghana has benefited from the United States Government special grant “MILLENNIUM CHALLENGE ACCOUNT (MCA), which is basically for the implementation of rural-based agriculture, transportation and community-based agro-related social infrastructure. It is intended to benefit some of the poorest rural districts where poverty rates range between 40% and 90% of the national standard. It is supposed to raise the income potentials of farmers through increased production of high-value cash crops along side basic food crops, improve transportation network, produce export handling facilities and food processing industries. Twenty-three districts are to benefit from the programme.
One challenging task of the Project is the development of comprehensive, district-level geospatial datasets for effective project planning and monitoring. Available data sets on the Biophysical Environment, Land use, Community’s Social, Economic and Cultural Profiles are yet to be generated, harmonized and integrated for ready use. There is therefore the need to develop a geo-harmonized database of all the spatial and non-spatial base data sets required for the Project.
A completely harmonized geospatial database on community-based social infrastructure facilities has been developed by the Centre for Remote Sensing and Geographic Information Services, for each administrative district. Biophysical and land use/land cover databases have also been established. This is expected to facilitate availability of essential quality –assured land and socio-economic related datasets in usable formats for use by project collaborators.
Classified remotely sensed images and GPS-based point-data acquisition formed part of the GIS-database building processes. The database has been geo-referenced to the 1/50,000 scale topographic base map of Ghana.