BMBF Project ViWaT-Mekong-Planning – Sustainable Water and Land Use for the Mekong Delta in Vietnam

The existence of the fascinating Mekong Delta in Vietnam is threatened. Climate change and sea level rise in combination with excessive groundwater use leads to land subsidence of several centimetres per year and to serious coastal erosion, as well as to land use conflicts and large-scale salinisation of surface waters and aquifers. As a result, the regional availability and quality of the available freshwater resources and thus the living conditions of 17.5 million people are severely endangered. The region urgently needs sustainable and adapted strategies, concepts and technologies for the protection and conservation of land and water resources, as well as appropriate measures that contribute significantly to secure the existence of the Mekong Delta.

In this context, the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) is funding the ambitious and large-scale ViWaT-Mekong joint project „Integrated Solutions for Sustainable Development in the Mekong Delta – Land, Water, Energy and Climate“ for three years as part of the programme „Client II – International Partnerships for Sustainable Innovation”. In order to find holistic solutions for the challenges of the Mekong Delta, ViWaT-Mekong relies on three pillars that deal with different priority topics and are called ViWaT Engineering, ViWaT Planning and ViWaT Operations. The Department of Spatial Information Management and Modelling (RIM), School of Spatial Planning at the TU Dortmund University, is responsible for the subproject 10 „Water-relevant Land Use“ using modern geo-information systems, remote sensing, especially radar remote sensing and UAV technology in the ViWaT-Mekong-Planning pillar. ViWaT-Mekong-Planning is coordinated by Prof. Dr. H. Stolpe (Chair of eE+E Environmental Engineering and Ecology at the Ruhr University Bochum) and funded by the BMBF with around two million euros (duration 01/11/2018-30/10/2011). The Co-Project ViWaT-Mekong in Vietnam is regarded as a „flagship project“ by the Vietnam Ministry of Science and Technology.

The aim of the ViWaT-Mekong-Planning pillar is to develop strategies to ensure that water in the Mekong Delta is used sustainably and that its inhabitants are better able to live with the consequences of climate change. Furthermore, it aims to contribute to a future-oriented regional plan for the Mekong Delta.


German project partners in the ViWaT-Mekong-Planning research project:

eE + E Environmental Engineering and Ecology, Prof. Dr. Stolpe, Ruhr University Bochum (coordination)

Department of Spatial Information Management and Modelling (RIM), Prof. Dr. Nguyen Xuan Thinh, TU Dortmund University

LSU Urban Water Management and Environmental Technology, Prof. Dr. Wichern, Ruhr University Bochum

Institute for Technology and Resources Management in the Tropics and Subtropics, Dr. Katrin Brömme, TH Köln

Fraunhofer Institute for Environmental, Safety, and Energy Technology UMSICHT, Oberhausen

Ribeka GmbH, Bornheim

Disy Informationssysteme GmbH, Karlsruhe


Vietnamese project partners in the ViWaT-Mekong-Planning research project:

Viet Nam National Center for Water Resources Planning and Investigation (NAWAPI), Hanoi

Viet Nam Southern Institute of Water Resources Research (SIWRR)

Viet Nam Institute of Geosciences and Mineral Resources (VIGMR), Hanoi

Viet Nam Association of Hydrogeologists (VAH)

Viet Nam Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, Department of Meteorology, Hydrology and Climate Change

Can Tho University

Mekong Water Technology Innovation Institute