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Prof. Simon M. Onywere

Simon M. Onywere is Director, Research Dissemination and Uptake, Kenyatta University and Associate Professor of Environmental Planning and Management in the School of Environmental Studies. He was Deputy Director, Research Capacity Building and Dissemination at the then Institute of Research, Science and Technology, Kenyatta University from 20th Sept 2011 – 2nd April 2014. He also Lecturers in the Department of Environmental Planning and Management.

Before Joining Kenyatta University in 2001, he was the Head of the Department of Geography, Egerton University, Njoro, Kenya (1998-2001). He made his PhD in 1997 in Structural/Remote Sensing Geology from the University of Nairobi with postgraduate research support from Universities Science Humanities and Engineering Partnerships in Africa (USHEPiA) to the University of Cape Town, South Africa at the Centre for Interactive Graphical Computing (Geological Science) where he partly worked on the Godwana GIS Database.

Prof. Onywere was named the ESRI Geospatial Knowledge (GIS) Champion in Eastern Africa for 2014 for his role in institutionalising the use of GIS and Technology of Knowledge and implementation ESRI’s 100 African Universities Programme.



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The programme makes available ArcGIS and Remote Sensing Tools everywhere on campus thus expanding access and use of GIS for teaching and Research. For this effort the Kenyatta University was recognised during the annual Esri International User Conference (presided by Jack Dangermond, the president and founder of Esri) and given Special Achievement in GIS (SAG-2015).

Prof Onywere was from June 2012 to April 2014, the Kenyatta University Champion in the Programme on Development Research Uptake in Sub-Saharan Africa (DRUSSA); a Twenty-four African universities partnership and collaboration between Centre for Research on Evaluation, Science and Technology (CREST), the Association for Commonwealth Universities (ACU) and Organization Systems Design (OSD) and funded by DFID, United Kingdom. He has been involved and champions research management and quality in higher education and organizational management through the Kenya DAAD Scholars Association (KDSA) where he was the Chairperson between 2010 and 2015)

He is involved in Integrated Watershed/Environmental Management Planning and has participated and trained communities in water resources and catchment management with 7 participatory catchment management plans to his credit. He was a cluster team leader of 15 projects of the Lake Victoria Research Initiative (VICRES) supported by SIDA-SAREC through the Inter-University Council of East Africa (IUCEA) on Heavy Metal Pollution. In 2010 he led a team of researchers from Kenyatta University and undertook “A Regional Disaster Risk Management Mainstreaming Study in 5 IGAD Members States (Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Sudan and Uganda)”.

In the same year he was the Lead Resource Person for IGAD Regional Workshop on Community Based Disaster Risk Management Training in Hawassa, Ethiopia, where 35 participants were exposed to technical approaches on Community Based Disaster Risk Management (CDRM) planning. More recently (since 2011) he led a team from Kenyatta University in Risk, Hazard, and Vulnerability and Capacity Assessment/Mapping in Support of Disaster Risk Reduction in all 8 Provinces of Kenya for the Ministry of State for Special Programmes. He has done a number of other projects in the Rift Valley of Kenya and is widely travelled in the East Africa Region. Recently he was involved in comprehensive mapping of the Geospatial Extent of 2011-2013 Flooding of the Eastern African Rift Valley Lakes in Kenya and its Implication on the Ecosystems with a focus on lakes Naivasha, Nakuru, Bogoria and Baringo.

Prof. Onywere is a Member of Kenya’s National Platform on Disaster Risk Management. His Memberships to regional networks include: the Geological Society of Kenya (GSK); the Regional Eastern Africa DIES Alumni Networking (REAL) on Quality in Higher Education; Water Capacity Building Network (WaterCap); and the UN University Network for Disaster Risk Reduction in Africa (UNeDRA).

His research interest is on the use of GIS and Technology body of knowledge in global problem solving. He has researched and published on the subject and in applications for integrated environmental/watershed management and disaster risk management. His concern on the expansion of the use of Geospatial knowledge for teaching and research saw him Spearhead the Establishment of Linkage between Kenyatta University and ESRI Eastern Africa under the 100 African Universities programme and Between Kenyatta University and Regional Centre for Mapping of Resources for development.

He has also been key in the organization of Esri Eastern Africa GIS Education Users conferences for the last three years.He teaches and researches in GIS and Remote Sensing for Environmental Planning and Management; Wetland Resources Management; Integrated Environmental Management; Planning for Disaster Preparedness and Management; Planning for Waste Management, Research Methodology and Project Planning.

Recent Publications


Last Updated on Friday, 29 July 2016 07:10

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