Course code MP18
Course title Geointelligence for Natural Resource Evaluation and Sustainable Management
Institution Mines ParisTech
Course address 60 boulevard Saint-Michel, 75272 Paris Cedex 06
City Paris
Minimum year of study 4th year
Minimum level of English Fair
Minimum level of French None
Key words

Complexity of multipartners decisions. Political risk. Environmental Assessment &Economic Evaluation. Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis, Central Africa


Open Source Intelligence. Virtual Globes. Remote Sensing.  GIS. Modeling of Natural Resources,. MCDA tools

Language English
Professor responsible Thierry ROUSSELIN, MinesParisTech
Participating professors Experts adressing their view of the Use Case
Number of places Minimum: 35, Maximum: 50, Reserved for local students: 0
Objectives This course provides an introduction to the problems of knowledge extraction and multi-criterion decisions based on available Information : satellite imagery, digital maps and open sources on the net (with an emphasis on data gathered with virtual globes : Google Earth, …).  It is particularly focused on practical applications to the sustainable management of renewable natural resources and their political, environmental and economic evaluation (oil & gas and mining investments, water resources, agri-business and environmental problems).

Based on a real Oil & Gas case in Central Africa with strong political, economic, humanitarian and environmental issues, the course offers a mix of teaching sessions (offering basics on the various techniques involved), use of real project documentation allowing to have the view of all actors (petroleum geologist, cartographer, geographer, journalist, banker, lender, environmental risk expert, NGO representative…)  and stakeholders from different continents (Africa, US, China, Europe) and labs (practical) including hands-on initiation to remote sensing, environmental accounting and multicriteria mediated decisions.

In 2018, the course will be dedicated to the situation of Chad in a context of low oil prices  (with associated very low revenues), difficult relation with China and Chinese oil companies (which have their own difficulties), Glencore problems (main lender of Chadian government), unsolved political crises (Boko Haram, Central African Republic, Sudan), aging leadership (local turmoil following difficult 2016 presidential election and economic crisis) and recent environmental problems in Chinese Oil Developments in Chad. Students will assess possible sustainable development scenarios in such a complex context.


The course is given in English.

Programme to be followed

 Technical lectures : Principles of Economic Geointelligence – Remote Sensing – Environmental and Pipeline Risks – Project Finance and Economic Parameters for Natural Resources Extraction Projects - Multi Criterion Decision Analysis

Case study: Students will have everyday hands-on sessions.  They will have to mitigate possible investment decisions based on multiple factors (future oil prices; Chadian politics; local and regional issues; the evolution of Sudan, Darfur, Sahel and the Gulf of Guinea; Chinese, US, European and Indian policies...). They will have access to the case history, satellite imagery and a complete geospatial data base. They will have access to software (training versions) for multi-criterion decision analysis. Students will be organized in project teams, each team providing analysis for one party (western oil company; Chinese oil company; local governments; World Bank; NGOs; …). At the end during a mediation session, each team will propose its analysis for various development scenarios.


All the teaching material in English is stored on a Cloud (available ten days before the course) and the documentation is available through a shared Evernote account.
Prerequisites Previous knowledge of statistical decision analysis and basic project economics is appreciated but not required. Previous knowledge of Google Earth is appreciated but not required. Genuine interest for global economy and its effect on developing countries in mandatory
Course exam The students are offered a 3 weeks period for finalizing the writing of a short report based on the practical sessions. Notation will be based on course participation, report content and level of understanding of the subject.