Participatory design of rooftop water harvesting systems for smallholder farmers in the corridor Seco region, Guatemala.

  • Beatrice Laurita
  • Giulio Castelli
  • Antonio Giacomin
  • Marlon Salazar
  • Alonso Torres
  • Yamuna Giambastiani
  • Federico Preti
  • Elena Bresci


The region of Corridor Seco, Guatemala, is facing a severe food crisis caused by extreme weather events, land degradation phenomena and water scarcity. In this situation, the adoption of Rooftop Water Harvesting systems can effectively support local livelihoods, especially in marginalised communities. We present a Participatory Design approach, realised with local population, to improve water harvesting systems damaged in the last 3 years. Taking advantage of local materials and construction style, “Soberanos” project managed to realise 23 new cisterns, all functioning after the first rainy season. Extended results showed how water harvesting can effectively increase food security in the region.