- As part of efforts aimed at building the capacity of relevant Nile Basin citizens on the use of the Nile Basin Decision Support System (NB DSS), the Secretariat introduced an online, free of charge and self-paced course in 2016, which has so far attracted more than 500 trainees. The NB DSS is an analytical tool jointly developed by NBI and Member States and completed in December 2012. It is a common computer-based platform for communication, information management and analysis of water resources. It provides a framework for sharing knowledge, understanding river system behaviour, evaluating alternative devel- opment and management strategies and supporting informed decision making.
- The increasing demand has also been witnessed from universities in the Nile Basin region as a tool for water resources analy- sis research. A case in point is the Inter-University Council for East Africa (IUCEA), with whom the Secretariat signed a memorandum of understanding to establish an enabling environment for promoting common objectives of enhancing use of Information, Communication and Technology (ICT) tools in research. A total of 20 more universities have since contacted the Secretariat for the NB DSS and more than 130 software licenses have been issued to staff and students in the different univer- sity, who have used the tool to conduct several studies.
- In addition, three PhD students (two from DR Congo and one from Sudan) , four master of science degree students (two from Sudan and two from Uganda) and one bachelor of science degree(from Uganda), have used the tool to carry out their research
- With the growing use of the tool the need to support users cannot be over stressed. The NBI Secretariat established a Nile Basin Decision Support System Helpdesk and User Community portal that is used as first line support for logging user tickets. The portal is used for tracking threads of correspondences from experts requiring support from NBI experts on the use of the tool.
- To enrol for the NB DSS course, log on to https://elearn.nilebasin.org/
- Going forward, the Secretariat is developing a web decision support dissemination platform that shall be used to make avail- able, analytical results along with hydrologic, hydraulic, and environmental as well as climate data, to a wider audience in the NBI Member States.
- The primary target for the Decision Support System (DSS) online dissemination platform includes technicians and water re- sources planners from the ministries responsible for water and related natural resources management; members of the various working groups and steering committee members following up NBI projects, academician and researchers.
- Results from the Strategic Water Resources Analysis conducted by the Secretariat as well the Nile Equatorial Lakes Investment Plan (NELIP) and Muilti-Sectoral Investment Opportunity Assessment (MSIOA) carried out by NBI’s Nile Equatorial Lakes Subsidiary Action Programme Coordination Unit (NELSAP-CU) shall form the initial knowledge base that will be accessed by users.
- The platform is expected to be made available to the general public by end of November 2020
Information Systems Specialist Nile-SEC, Entebbe