The Vegetationmap4africa project

The Vegetationmap4africa team

We are a team of scientists from the World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF) and the University of Copenhagen (UCPH) with a special interest in the development and promotion of sustainable use practices and conservation of natural resources, with a special focus on agroforestry and forestry. The tools presented on this website were developed in partnership with the partners listed below and was made possible thanks to the support of various organizations. The aim of this map and complementary tools was to provide a baseline that can be used for a variety of purposes including:
  • integrated interpretation of landscapes and indicate the position of transitions between areas with significantly different environmental conditions, conditions which are most likely to be important determinative factors for agricultural potential;
  • to predict potential distributions of indigenous plant species in the agricultural landscapes and predict possible genetic variation across distributional ranges;
  • to provide a user friendly extension tool for improving the potential options (both from indigenous and exotic species) available to farmers in their quest for improving livelihoods and income generation;
  • to provide baseline data that can be used in forecasts of land use and cover changes, e..g, due to climate change or demographic changes
  • to provide a management tool for interpretation of historical, current, and future distribution of ecosystems and ecoregions
  • to provide a tool for ecological restoration and protection of eco-systems

Section for Forest, Nature and Biomass, Department of Geosciences and Natural Resource Management (IGN), University of Copenhagen (UCPH)

Website: http://ign.ku.dk/english

  • Jens-Peter B. Lillesø
  • Lars Graudal

The World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF)

Website: http://www.worldagroforestry.org

  • Roeland Kindt
  • Lars Graudal
  • Ramni Jamnadass


Website: https://ecodiv.earth

  • Paulo van Breugel


The following persons and institutes have made important contributions to the vegetation map and other products presented on this website:


  • Sebsebe Demissew (The National Herbarium, Addis Ababa University)
  • Ib Friis (Natural History Museum of Denmark, Botany)


  • Francis Gachathi (Kenya Forestry Research Institute (KEFRI))


  • James Kalema (Department of Botany, Makerere University)
  • J.W. Mulumba (Entebbe Botanical Gardens, National Agricultural Research Organisation)
  • Namaganda (Entebbe Botanical Gardens, National Agricultural Research Organisation)


  • C.K. Ruffo (Institute of Scientific and Technological Research)
  • M. Védaste (Institute of Scientific and Technological Research)


  • F. Mbago (University of Dar es Salaam)
  • H.N. Moshi (University of Dar es Salaam)
  • Henry Ndangalasi (University of Dar es Salaam)


  • Cornell Dudley (University of Malawi - retired)


  • Mike Bingham (private consultant)


Version 2.0

  • The expansion of the Vegetationmap4africa map to Burundi was supported by the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) through support to the project Improving Sustainable Productivity in Farming Systems and Enhanced Livelihoods through Adoption of Evergreen Agriculture in Eastern Africa (FSC/2012/014), implemented by the World Agroforestry Centre.
  • The map include contributions from the Ph.D. project 'Changing environments under future climates' funded by Danida.
  • Updates and improvements to the species distribution and species selection tools were made possible thanks to support from the CGIAR Research Program on Forests, Trees and Agroforestry (FTA; supported by the CGIAR Fund Donors).
  • Development and maintenance of the website and the online, offline and mobile maps by Spatialdynamics.

Version 1.1

  • This version incorporated contributions from the Ph.D. project 'Changing environments under future climates' funded by Danida.
  • The preparation of the national atlases were made possible thanks to support from CGIAR Research Program CCAFS.
  • Updates and improvements to the species distribution and species selection tools were made possible thanks to support from the CGIAR Research Program on Forests, Trees and Agroforestry (FTA; supported by the CGIAR Fund Donors).

Version 1.0

  • The first version of the map was developed by the VECEA project, made possible thanks to funding from the Rockefeller Foundation.
  • The project furthermore benefited from:
    • previous support from Danida to botanists at the relevant departments of the universities of Makerere in Uganda and Dar es Salaam in Tanzania via the ENRECA programme,
    • support from SIDA/SAREC and grants from the Carlsberg Foundation to the Ethiopian Flora Project.
    • Support from UNEP-GEF to the Carbon Benefits Project (CBP)  through which information was compiled on indicator and characteristic  species for The Vegetation Map of Africa (White 1983). (This work led to  the publication in 2011 of an Africa-wide tree species selection tool that is  available from:  http://www.worldagroforestrycentre.org/our_products/databases/useful-tree-species-africa) .
    • Support from BMZ for funding the  ReACCT project in Tanzania through which funding was made available for  field verification of the Vegetationmap4africa map around Morogoro (this was essential  in preparing the Vegetationmap4africa map as the base map for Tanzania was essentially  a physiognomic map.
  • We would also like to acknowledge
    • the Assistance provided by Meshack Nyabenge (ICRAF)  and Jane Wanjara (ICRAF) for digitization of maps.
    • comments and suggestions that were made by  Paul Smith and Jonathan Timberlake (both of Royal Botanic Gardens Kew)  when they reviewed early drafts of volumes 2, 3, 4 & 5.
    • Contributions from colleagues in our institutions who contributed directly or indirectly  to the completion of the Vegetationmap4africa vegetation map and its associated documentation. We especially appreciate the assistance by Nelly Mutio (as for  organizing logistics for the regional workshop that we organized in 2009  and for assisting in administrative issues), Melita Jørgensen (for desktop  publishing), and of Jeanette van der Steeg for helping with the final preparation of the maps for Volume 1.
  • Compilation of thematic soil maps that were derived  from the soil map of Rwanda (Birasa, E.C., Bizimana, I., Bouckaert, W., Gallez,  A., Maesschalck, G., and Vercruysse, J. (1992). Carte Pédologique du Rwanda. Echelle: 1/250.000. Réalisée dans le cadre du projet “Carte Pédologique  du Rwanda” (AGCD, CTB). AGCD (Belgique) et MINAGRI, Kigali) by Ann Verdoodt and Eric Van Ranst (both from the University  of Ghent)
  • Sharing of the digital map “Vegetation of Volcanoes National Park” by Eugene Kayijamahe from the Center for Geographic Information System  and Remote Sensing at the National University of Rwanda.