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Dependence on groundwater has increased with over one million tubewells in use. Groundwater decline and spread of salinity is rendering fertile lands  unusable.

The project team is collaborating with researchers, farmers, farming communities and relevant government and non-government agencies to build capacity for improved groundwater management.

Current research

Pakistan depends on irrigation, and groundwater is increasingly crucial for that irrigation.   The core of this project is collaboration through partnerships to address the complexity of achieving effective, fair groundwater management.

Surface water supply is highly variable, particularly for farmers in Balochistan and those at the tail end of canals in Sindh and Punjab. In these provinces dependence on groundwater has rapidly increased. Continuous decline in groundwater levels is undermining livelihoods, especially of poor smallholder farming families. Poor general awareness of groundwater issues is coupled with low capacity for monitoring and modelling groundwater. Collaboration among all stakeholders is needed to rapidly address these issues.

Intended outcomes by the end of the project:

This project aims to build capacity of researchers, farmers, farming communities and relevant government and non-government agencies to improve groundwater management in ways that enhance farming family livelihoods in Pakistan. Building capacity means building skills, knowledge and confidence, and providing relevant tools and processes.

Intended longer-term outcomes (improved farming family livelihoods beyond the life of the project):

  • Some farmer/ farm incomes have increased
  • Effective and fair groundwater management


  • Charles Sturt University
  • Balochistan Irrigation and Power Department
  • Balochistan University of Information Technology
  • Engineering and Management Sciences
  • International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas
  • Mehran University of Engineering and Technology
  • NED University of Engineering and Technology
  • Pakistan Council for Research on Water Resources
  • PMAS Arid Agriculture University
  • Punjab Irrigation Department
  • Sindh Agricultural University
  • Sindh Irrigation Department
  • University for Arid Agriculture
  • University of Agriculture
  • University of Agriculture Faisalabad
  • Water and Power Development Authority