Dr. Victor O. Odipo

Dr. Victor Onyango Odipo

...works as Earth Observation and Big Data Specialist at International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) in Nairobi, Kenya (portrait in English)
Dr. Victor O. Odipo
Foto: Victor O. Odipo


Study programme and degree

Graduation year

That's what I do now
I am Earth Observation and Big Data Specialist at International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) in Nairobi, Kenya.

Career and career entry

What does a typical working day look like for you in three sentences?
Archiving climate and ecological remote sensing data, processing, analysis and presentation. I basically work in Livestock Index Insurance (IBLI) department, monitoring forage condition, assessing climate and effects of this on seasonal availability of forage for livestock, relied upon by pastoralist communities in the Greater Horn of Africa and Sahelian rangelands. I am using Earth Observatoin (EO) in developing drought early warning system.


Which project in your professional life are you particularly proud of?
Working on and improving drought resilience by pastoralist communities dependent on rangelands for their livelihoods Data acquisition through UAVs to capture rangeland vegetation dynamics, and to validate coarse resolution EO datasets for continuous monitoring. Establishing an in-situ soil moisture network to monitor water use efficiency by rangeland vegetation.

A study or professional career rarely follows a straight course: What crises or hurdles did you face and how did you overcome them?
Hurdles: Work-place dynamics - not able to achieve the objectives within the set timelines because of working in multiple interesting projects. Solution: Hiring more experts to assist with the work.

Which experiences from your time as a student help you the most in your professional life?
Big data (EO) analytics and developing data analysis workflows using open-source platforms (R, Python, IDL).


What was your favourite place when you were studying in Jena? And why?
The hills surrounding Jena. They provided me with best places to run while at the same time getting a better view of Jena town.

Which moment during your time as a student in Jena has remained a special memory for you?
Supportive colleagues at the Department of Earth Observation and Glühwein during christmas holidays.

Career guidance tips for current students and prospective students

What tip do you have for students who are about to graduate and are looking for their first job?
Practical skills are important for employers as opposed to theories.


(Porträt vom Februar 2022)