Africa Groundwater Literature Archive

About this site

This archive of groundwater literature for Africa was developed as part of the Africa Groundwater Atlas project, through the Unlocking the Potential for Groundwater for the Poor (UPGro) research programme.

UPGro is jointly funded by UK's Department for International Development (DFID) (UK Aid), Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) and the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC). The programme focuses on improving the evidence base around groundwater availability and management in sub-Saharan Africa to enable developing countries and partners in sub-Saharan Africa to use groundwater in a sustainable way in order to benefit the poor.

The Africa Groundwater Atlas project makes available:

Africa Groundwater Literature Archive

The archive currently contains 8710 references related to groundwater in Africa, including unpublished reports, manuals, maps, journal articles and conference papers. Some of the documents derive from groundwater exploration, research and development projects on which the British Geological Survey (BGS) worked from the 1970s to the present day, often in collaboration with other national and international organisations.

If the document is digital, where possible the Archive provides a web link to the full text of the document freely available to download. A few documents are available as a pdf download directly from the Archive. If the full document is not freely available, for example because of copyright restrictions, a web link is provided to an online abstract where possible. If there is no online link, it means we have no information about whether a digital, online version of the document exists. The Archive does not hold hard copies of documents.

The current Archive is by no means an exhaustive list of groundwater literature for Africa. If you have, or know of, other documents which you would like to see in the Archive, please feel free to get in touch, whether they are already online and/or digital or whether they are in hard copy. If you hold the copyright to any items in the Archive that are not currently available to download, and you would like them to be provided through the Archive, please get in touch via the contact page.


Many individuals and organisations have supported this project and helped to develop the Africa Groundwater Literature Archive. The project organisers would like to thank the following in particular for their help:

The project steering committee: Tamiru Abiye, Callist Tindimugaya, Segun Adelana and John Chilton.

Jeff Davies at the British Geological Survey, who laid the foundations of the Archive through his many years collecting, digitising and cataloguing grey and published literature relevant to groundwater in Africa.

John Talbot at the British Geological Survey, who designed and implemented the database behind this Archive.

The students who contributed to the Archive through their voluntary work to index and attribute some of the thousands of references: Emily Carson, Deborah Ely, Will Gray, Ailsa Guild, Jenny Ridout and Emily Strathdee.

The Archive also benefits directly from the wealth of mainly unpublished 'grey' literature collated in the SADC Groundwater Grey Literature Archive (

Any errors or omissions in the Africa Groundwater Literature Archive remain the responsibility of the project team.