Part 3 of 3: What I will be doing this summer!

Well here it is, after two long posts , this last post in the series lets you in on what I will be working on this summer. I am going to be working in Chikwawa District in south-western Malawi (red on map below) with the District Water Office.

Map of Malawi showing Chikwawa District

The District Water Office is working to improve water point monitoring across the Chikwawa District and I will be working with them on a number of tasks that will help with this process. Specifically I will be working with a water point monitoring system that has been developed for district government use in Malawi.

The software is designed to create a database of water points (aka places to access water, e.g. pump well) which is both simple enough that it only requires basic computer skills to operate and sophisticated enough to develop summary tables, maps and coverage statistics to aid with District Water Office planning.

The next couple of pictures will help to give you an idea of what the system looks like:

This is the Waterpoint Database. Each line of the database represents a village. For each village the number of water points broken down by type and whether or not they are functioning is imputed. Also included are the number of households served by the waterpoints in each village

After data has been inputted, the software creates maps which summarize the data. In this map, water point functionality by Traditional Authority (large area) is shown.

Another example of a map which is automatically generated by the software, this map shows functionality rates by Group Village.

I will be working with the District Water Office to continue to develop this software as well as working with the Office on various components of the data collection, verification and usage process.

Huge credit goes to Edward Ng an EWB member from the University of Waterloo for writing the code; Owen Scott, an EWB African Program Staff member for working with the District to develop and implement the software (; and all of the employees at the Chikwawa District Water Office.

This is of course just a summary, so if you have any questions or would like to learn more send me a quick email or comment below.

Thanks for reading!


2 responses to this post.

  1. Just want to say what a great blog you got here!
    I’ve been around for quite a lot of time, but finally decided to show my appreciation of your work!

    Thumbs up, and keep it going!

    Christian, VideoChat with Amateur Girls at Home Alone!


  2. Posted by Tanner on May 28, 2010 at 11:51 am

    I love it Lauren! I feel like before leaving you were already knowledgeable enough to be teaching us about what you would be doing. I can’t wait to hear how your first week has been.


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