Before becoming independent in 1962, the small central African Republic of Burundi was administered by Belgium, and was mapped by Belgian survey organizations. Monochrome planimetric maps in 52 sheets at 1:50,000 scale and 13 sheets at 1:100,000 scale were compiled in the 1930s and reprinted between 1968 and 1971 by the Musée Royale de l’Afrique Centrale (MRAC), Tervuren. However, after independence the Institut Géographique du Burundi (IGEBU) was established at Bujumbura, and a new 1:50,000 scale map series in 42 sheets was prepared by the French Institut Géographique National (IGN) jointly with IGEBU, which is now the principal topographic series. This map is in six colours with contours at 20 m intervals, and with bilingual French and Kirundi legend. The projection is Gauss, Clarke 1880 ellipsoid, and sheets each cover a quarter-degree square. In 1985, IGEBU moved to Gitega, the proposed new capital, but retains an office at Bujumbura. New aerial photography was obtained in 1984, but no new mapping has appeared. Several, mostly black and white small-scale thematic maps have been produced by IGEBU.
Soviet military topographic mapping of Burundi is available at the following scales: 1:1 000 000 (4 sheets, complete coverage, published 1958-1977); and 1:500 000 (4 sheets, complete coverage, published 1962-1964). These products are available in print, digital raster and digital vector GIS formats from East View Geospatial.
Geological and mineral resource mapping is the responsibility of the Département de la Géologie (DGB) of the Ministry of Energy and Mines. A 1:100,000 scale geological series has been completed with the Belgian Musée Royale de l’Afrique Centrale (MRAC), while a general geological map of the country was published in 1981. Small-scale geological and metallic mineral deposit maps have also been produced with aid from the United Nations Development Programme.
Extensive soil mapping, mainly at 1:50,000 scale, has been undertaken by the Institut des Sciences Agronomiques du Burundi (ISABU).
The national atlas was published in 1981 by the Association pour l’Atlas du Burundi and comprises 30 thematic full-colour plates, mostly at 1:750,000 scale.
Provincial and commune maps have been prepared by the Département de la Population. Censuses and large scale city mapping has been undertaken by the Institut Superieur des Techniciens de l’Amenagement et du Urbanisme (ISTAU).
The best general maps of the country are the 1:250,000 scale map in the French Institut Géographique National’s Pays et villes du monde series, published in 1994, and a map of Rwanda and Burundi published in 1998 by International Travel Maps (ITM).
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