The Taabo Health and Demographic Surveillance System (HDSS) is located in south-central Côte d’Ivoire, approximately 150?km north-west of Abidjan. The Taabo HDSS started surveillance activities in early 2009 and the man-made Lake Taabo is a key eco-epidemiological feature. Since inception, there has been a strong interest in research and integrated control of water-associated diseases such as schistosomiasis and malaria. The Taabo HDSS has generated setting-specific evidence on the impact of targeted interventions against malaria, schistosomiasis and other neglected tropical diseases. The Taabo HDSS consists of a small town, 13 villages and over 100 hamlets. At the end of 2013, a total population of 42 480 inhabitants drawn from 6707 households was under surveillance. Verbal autopsies have been conducted to determine causes of death. Repeated cross-sectional epidemiological surveys on approximately 5–7% of the population and specific, layered-on haematological, parasitological and questionnaire surveys have been conducted. The Taabo HDSS provides a database for surveys, facilitates interdisciplinary research, as well as surveillance, and provides a platform for the evaluation of health interventions. Requests to collaborate and to access data are welcome and should be addressed to the secretariat of the Centre Suisse de Recherches Scientifiques en Côte d’Ivoire: [firstname.lastname@example.org].