iDE Global

Burkina Faso

iDE increases incomes and improves the health of rural households by creating business opportunities in agriculture and sanitation.

Why we’re here—

Burkina Faso is an arid, land-locked country in West Africa. Rural communities in Burkina Faso face many challenges including a lack of access to water for production and poor access to improved sanitation facilities. Agriculture represents 32 percent of its gross domestic product and occupies 80 percent of the working population. The country experiences some of the most radical climatic variation in the world, ranging from severe flooding to extreme drought. Farm production is affected by years of deforestation, overgrazing of animals, and a population growth that is the sixth-highest in the world.

The Women at the Well

Women wait their turn at the well—filling jugs with water for drinking and irrigating. This duty is mainly relegated to the female members of the family, and is a time-consuming and laborious process. Irrigation technology, such as drip irrigation, not only saves women time but also conserves water and increases yields.

iDE PC BF Well Women

What matters—

Gender Equity

Burkina Faso has one of the highest incidences of gender inequality in the world, particularly in literacy, in representation in the labor force, and in politics.  

By focusing on women as customers and entrepreneurs, iDE strengthens their participation in rural value chains and increases their access to technology, know-how, finance, and markets.

Learn more about iDE’s commitment to Gender Equity.


Children in Burkina Faso have malnutrition rates much higher than the maximum acceptable thresholds set by the World Health Organization: 13 percent are wasted, 29 percent are low in weight-for-height, and 30 percent are low in weight-for-age.

By promoting high-value, nutritious crops, iDE empowers farmers to earn more income and provide their families and communities with a more varied diet, fueling them with the energy and mental ability they need to be successful. iDE also improves access to safe water and sanitation, keeping people healthy and able to absorb the nutrients gained from an improved diet.

Learn more about iDE’s commitment to Nutrition.

Food Security

Droughts and political unrest have stressed an already weak food production and distribution system in Burkina Faso. Farm production continues to suffer from insufficient water supply and poor soil.

By improving farmers’ access to high-quality seeds, technology, and farming best practices, iDE enhances their ability to increase production, growing their incomes and food availability in their communities, region, and country.

Learn more about iDE's commitment to Food Security.

Resilience to Climate Change

A 2012 U.S. Geological Survey reported that, overall, Burkina Faso is becoming significantly hotter. Given its already arid lands, increased warming could further reduce harvests and pasture availability, making future droughts much more severe.

iDE helps people in rural areas build their resilience to climate extremes through the use of water-saving and climate-smart agricultural technologies and practices.

Learn more about iDE’s commitment to Smart Technologies.

Resource-smart technology

Bridging the design gap between the developed and developing worlds

Understanding that small-scale farming families have severe resource limitations, iDE works to help minimize the pressure on labor, income, water, and energy by identifying and re-designing technologies existing at the intersection of these four resources, which can have a life-changing impact on struggling farmers.

Read more: Technology that uses resources wisely, but isn't cost-prohibitive to poor farmers, is smart

What works—

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The potential for small-scale irrigated agriculture in Burkina Faso is immense. iDE is creating a sustainable supply chain for drip irrigation kits and other irrigation technologies that enable farmers to plant up to three crop cycles a year. iDE is also working with the International Water Management Institute on research analyzing the factors that could limit the adoption of the irrigation technology. iDE is utilizing its expertise to help develop markets and value chains around the Orange Fleshed Sweetpotato (OFSP) at pilot locations in Kénédougou Province. We are using a market-based approach to improve small-scale farmers’ income and simultaneously reduce vitamin A deficiency. With Groundwater Relief, iDE works to understand underground water flow in targeted areas, to promote the right water use solutions. And, to address identified issues around drip irrigation adoption, iDE is developing an integrated irrigation package that includes quality seed, fertilizers, pesticides, and solar pumps along with the drip piping and emitters.

Learn more about iDE’s global Agriculture strategy.

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Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH)

In 2014, iDE began using our business knowledge and experience to develop markets for sanitation in Burkina Faso. We are working with communities to design a low-cost, hygienic latrine, taking care to ensure safe installation. Our team trains masons to build and sell these latrines, which are expected to retail around $50, a very low cost for this product in Burkina Faso.

Learn more about iDE’s global WASH Strategy.


Sector 23, Street 29-18
06 BP 9532 Ouagadougou 06
Phone: +226  25 47 32 00

Our partners—


  • Action Against Hunger
  • Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
  • Burkina Faso Government
  • Cowater International
  • EcoBank
  • European Commission
  • Global Affairs Canada
  • Groundwater Relief
  • International Fund for Agriculture Development
  • International Potato Center
  • International Water Management Institute
  • Jain
  • Netafim
  • RAIN Foundation
  • Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation
  • United States Agency for International Development
  • West African Science Service Center on Climate Change and Adapted Land Use