InoCottonGROW - Innovative Impulses Reducing the Water Footprint of the Global Cotton-Textile Industry towards the UN-Sustainable Development Goals


Water footprint, cotton, irrigation, efficiency, productivity, Pakistan


Pakistan (and Turkey)


The global water resources are endangered regionally by the production of water-intensive cotton textiles especially in arid and semi-arid areas. The aim of the collaborative project is to contribute to the sustainable use of water in the cotton textile supply chain with innovative impulses and to further develop the concept of a Water Footprint to a regional management instrument for national decision makers, textile traders and consumers. The newly developed methodology is being tested in case studies in Pakistan where German demand for textiles is responsible for a large portion of virtual water exports.


Within the InoCottonGROW project, ZEF contributes mainly to fulfilling following objectives by respective approaches:

  • to work out a status analysis of the cotton irrigation in Pakistan and Turkey necessary for the application of the Water Footprint and to identify and specify approaches to increase efficiency, effectiveness and productivity in irrigation (focus: cotton) by improved irrigation scheduling and advanced handling of irrigation techniques;
  • to present in a demonstration project in Pakistan the potential as well as appropriate measures for increasing water productivity and thus reduce the water footprint in cotton irrigation (taking current institutional framework conditions into account);
  • to evaluate/assess the potential contribution by achieving these goals in the direction of the UN sustainability goals and to identify alternative development scenarios such as the diversification of cotton farming with other cultivated crops (food).

These methodological steps are carried out in close cooperation with our partners (in Pakistan mainly with: University of Agriculture in Faisalabad; Punjab Irrigation and Power Department).

Main Cooperation Partners

  • Research Institute for Water and Waste Management at RWTH Aachen FiW (lead)
  • Institute of Hydraulic Engineering and Water Resources Management at RWTH Aachen
  • Department of Sustainable Engineering at TU Berlin
  • Department of Remote Sensing/University of Wuerzburg
  • Research Institute for Textile and Clothing at Hochschule Niederrhein
  • IWW Water Centre Muehlheim
  • Institute of Business Administration & Hochschule Ruhr West
  • University of Agriculture in Faisalabad
  • Punjab Irrigation and Power Department
Main Funding Partners

German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF)

Duration of the Project

03/2017 - 02/2020

Project Homepage


Bernhard Tischbein

Dr. Bernhard Tischbein


Diese Webseite verwendet Cookies

Diese Website verwendet Cookies – nähere Informationen dazu und zu Ihren Rechten als Benutzer finden Sie in unserer Datenschutzerklärung am Ende der Seite. Klicken Sie auf „Ich stimme zu“, um Cookies zu akzeptieren und direkt unsere Website besuchen zu können.
Read more