I was wondering if there are good publicly available dataset for surface run-off (water)?

I have a rough idea that surface run-off should be some function of rain-fall and soil infiltration/absorption etc. My question is whether there is some reputable dataset for Africa or globally.

I did a preliminary search, but most datasets that say "rainfall/run-off" are actually rain-fall data. And I can't find a run-off dataset for download.

I have STRM DEM data, and have processed the terrain using ArcHydro. What I am really looking for is something that combines rainfall and soil absorption etc, to give runoff estimates.

  • Africa is a very large area comprising of 50+ countries. How about you narrow down your search area to a country or region of Africa.
    – jonathanw
    Nov 19, 2014 at 20:14
  • @jonathanw I am specifically interested in West (and Central) Africa.
    – tinlyx
    Nov 19, 2014 at 22:59

2 Answers 2


Ok I know of two products that may help you.

  1. This site gives all the grunt work for the hydrologiclly correct layers you would require to conduct such an analysis.
  2. The Open-source Water Observation and Information System (WOIS) is now active in Africa. Is is compiled using open-source GIS (link) and includes modules for TSS.

It is not a project for beginners and Africa is rather large so you should start with a singular basin but conceptually much of these data now exist designed for use in FOSS GIS.

  • Thanks for the info. They could be useful for computing the runoff, but I can't find a run-off layer.
    – tinlyx
    Nov 19, 2014 at 23:54
  • You will not find a runoff layer for Africa. You will have to make it. Nov 20, 2014 at 0:03

I am not sure if you have check this out ?

http://www.diva-gis.org/ ?


How about this ?


This might help you to browse around in Africa.


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