GeoTel page banner

IGN Updates Burkina Faso National Base Map

IGN Updates Burkina Faso National Base Map

A few years ago, back in 2001, IGN France International was awarded a massive GIS project by the European Union in order to assist the tiny nation of Burkina Faso to update and enhance its national base map infrastructure.  The project has now been completed, and this major breakthrough has created 34 GIS topographic maps.

IGN was formally created back in in 1986, and is now a subsidiary of the French based National Institute of Geographic and Forest Information.  It provides services in both the acquisition of geographic information (such as the processing and the modeling of data) and the implementation of new GIS technology.

The last time the government of Burkina Faso updated its national base map was way back in the 1950’s.  During this timeframe up until now, major changes have occurred in the landscape of Burkina Faso.  For instance, many new water based dams and roadways have been created, there has been massive urban expansion, as well as growth in the agricultural land.

This base map infrastructure had four main components to it:

1)      The acquisition of hundreds of satellite images, as well the procurement of the sophisticated GIS technology in order to capture these images.

2)      The recruitment of local talent in Burkina Faso to carry out the tasks and project milestones associated with this project.

3)      The actual production phase which consisted of the collection of the information and data to upgrade the national map.

4)      With the work now completed, government officials are now highlighting the many benefits that this upgraded national map now brings to the population of Burkina Faso.

As a result of this massive undertaking, GIS professionals can now can utilize, as well as reference, the data which will let them “ . . . collect, share, aggregate data and information coming from various sources,” as was noted in Directions Magazine.  (SOURCE:  This project officially ended on February 19, 2015, with an official ceremony which took place at the National Mapping Institute of Burkina (also known as ‘IGB’).

GeoTel is a telecommunications research and GIS mapping firm that researches and provides telecom datasets for more than 5,500 cities in the United States and worldwide. GeoTel’s expertise includes specialists in economic geography, geospatial engineering, web GIS, and telecommunications GIS Data infrastructure.

Valerie Stephen