Case study

GIZ – Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit

GIZ is a well-known German non-profit organization that uses OpenProject for development work in Rwanda.
GIZ – Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit
Thomas Wiemann
OpenProject offers us an integrated, sophisticated project management system with many collaboration features. The option of an on-premise version was essential for our projects in Rwanda. Also, the existence of the free community version is crucial in order to have a fallback solution where no data is lost if the financial support runs out.

Thomas Wiemann


Programm Manager and IT Architect for GovStack, digital Convergence and ICGLR

How GIZ works with OpenProject

RISA: Supporting social projects in Rwanda for over 5 years

The Rwanda Information Society Authority (RISA) is mandated to oversee all IT projects of the Rwandan Government. With the help of OpenProject, it has realized numerous important projects over the last five years. Among them:

  • The implementation of a central data warehouse platform for Rwanda.
  • The consolidation of about two hundred government websites in Rwanda onto a standardized system.
  • The implementation of the Corona Warning App for Rwanda.
  • The development of the Tree Tracker for the Rwanda Forest Authority, with which seedlings for reforestation are to be managed centrally.

These are just four exciting examples of 30 projects that RISA has worked on with the help of OpenProject, usually always in the form of larger iterations, divided into smaller sprints.

Digital Mining with the help of OpenProject

GIZ is also providing development aid for various other social projects and has launched another OpenProject instance in 2024. These include, for example, the development of the following projects in Africa:

  • The Rwanda Mining Board, which aims to use digital mining to make raw materials traceable and therefore more sustainable.
  • The general development roadmap of the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR), an intergovernmental organization in Central Africa.
  • The overarching output indicator management for various sub-projects of the GIZ supporting the ICGLR.

OpenProject as a training system for IT and project management

GIZ has already implemented a number of important development aid projects with OpenProject. At the same time, GIZ also uses OpenProject as a kind of training system for its employees: By working with the project management software, employees learn agile project management: How are projects carried out efficiently? When is a task completed? How do I communicate so that all project team members are on the same page?

In this way, local employees in Rwanda are gradually becoming trained project managers who in the long term will be able to pass on agile project management methods to others themselves. This IT training is also important development aid that GIZ is providing with the help of OpenProject.

Why does GIZ value project management with OpenProject?

Flexible configuration

I can set up OpenProject so that employees can get started easily with a low barrier to entry.

Freemium version as fallback

The existence of a free Community version is extremely helpful, especially for NGOs with external funding. If funds are lacking, it is possible to switch at any time and no data is lost.

Outstanding support

No matter what question we had as an Enterprise customer - it was generally answered very quickly. Even with issues that we had caused ourselves.

Self-Hosting in Rwanda

For RISA, it is essential that the instance is hosted in Rwanda. The instance for ICGLR, on the other hand, is hosted in the cloud. With OpenProject, the choice is mine.

Screenshots: OpenProject (Demo)


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