On the basis of a preliminary experiment in 1985 (KRISP 85), a seismic refraction/wide-angle reflection survey and a teleseismic tomography experiment were jointly undertaken to study the lithospheric structure of the Kenya rift down to depths of greater than 200 km. This report serves as an introduction to a series of subsequent papers and will focus on the technical description of the seismic surveys of the main KRISP 90 effort. The seismic refraction/wide-angle reflection survey was carried out in a 4-week period in January and February 1990. It consisted of three profiles: one extending along the rift valley from Lake Turkana to Lake Magadi, one crossing the rift at Lake Baringo, and one located on the eastern flank of the rift proper. A total of 206 mobile vertical-component seismographs, with an average station interval of about 2 km, recorded the energy of underwater and borehole explosions to distances of up to about 550 km. During the teleseismic survey an array of 65 seismographs was deployed to record teleseismic, regional and local events for a period of about 7 months from October 1989 to April 1990. The elliptical array spanned the central portion of the rift, with Nakuru at its center, and covered an area about 300 ?? 200 km, with an average station spacing of 10-30 km. Major scientific goals of the project were to reveal the detailed crustal and upper-mantle structure under the Kenya rift, to study the relationship between deep crustal and mantle structure and the development of sedimentary basins and volcanic features within the rift, to understand the role of the Kenya rift within the Afro-Arabian rift system, and to answer fundamental questions such as the mode and mechanism of continental rifting. ?? 1994.