Presenter/Author Information

Alexey Voinov

Keywords

modularity, calibration, integrated modelling, chesapeake bay, module linking, components

Start Date

1-7-2010 12:00 AM

Description

In many cases model integration treats models as software components only, ignoring the fluid relationship between models and reality, the evolving nature of models and their constant modification and re-calibration. As a result, with integrated models we find increased complexity, where changes that used to impact only relatively contained models of subsystems, now propagate throughout the whole integrated system. This makes it harder to keep the overall complexity under control and, in a way, defeats the purpose of modularity, when efficiency is supposed to be gained from independent development of modules. Treating models only as software in solving the integration challenge may give birth to 'integronsters' - constructs that are perfectly valid as software products but ugly and useless as models. We argue that one possible remedy is to learn to use data as modules and integrate them into the models. Then the data that are available for module calibration can serve as an intermediate linkage tool, sitting between modules and providing a moduleindependent baseline dynamics, which is then incremented when scenarios are to be run. In this case it is not the model output that is directed into the next model input, but model output is presented as a variation around the baseline trajectory, and it is this variation that is then fed into the next module down the chain. The Chesapeake Bay Program suite of models is used to illustrate these problems and the possible solutions.

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Jul 1st, 12:00 AM

Integronsters' and the special role of data

In many cases model integration treats models as software components only, ignoring the fluid relationship between models and reality, the evolving nature of models and their constant modification and re-calibration. As a result, with integrated models we find increased complexity, where changes that used to impact only relatively contained models of subsystems, now propagate throughout the whole integrated system. This makes it harder to keep the overall complexity under control and, in a way, defeats the purpose of modularity, when efficiency is supposed to be gained from independent development of modules. Treating models only as software in solving the integration challenge may give birth to 'integronsters' - constructs that are perfectly valid as software products but ugly and useless as models. We argue that one possible remedy is to learn to use data as modules and integrate them into the models. Then the data that are available for module calibration can serve as an intermediate linkage tool, sitting between modules and providing a moduleindependent baseline dynamics, which is then incremented when scenarios are to be run. In this case it is not the model output that is directed into the next model input, but model output is presented as a variation around the baseline trajectory, and it is this variation that is then fed into the next module down the chain. The Chesapeake Bay Program suite of models is used to illustrate these problems and the possible solutions.