Presenter/Author Information

Holly C. Hartmann

Keywords

decision support tool (dss), climate services, information systems, decision support

Start Date

1-7-2012 12:00 AM

Description

The U.S. national investment in remote sensing systems, supercomputers, hydroclimatic research, and scientist education has produced significant advances in hydroclimatic monitoring, understanding, and predictive capabilities. However, realization of socio-economic benefits from those investments remains incomplete, for many reasons. Experience within the Climate Assessment for the Southwest (CLIMAS) has clarified commonalities across sectors and stakeholders on which to base systemic advancement of hydroclimatic decision support tools. Case studies of six very different tools, developed through CLIMAS activities and emphasizing human factors in the use of environmental information, are used to illustrate user-centric strategies and tactics for developing effective decision support tools. The case studies include a forecast evaluation tool, an information portfolio management system, a hydrologic alert system, tools for drought analysis of paleoclimatological flow reconstructions, a tool for customizing probabilistic forecasts, and a guided compendium of tools for considering climate change in water planning and management. Our design framework reflects that because decisions are made through the integration of knowledge and wisdom, with the latter more complex, diverse, and changeable than can be practically programmed in traditional computerized decision support tools, knowledge development is the most appropriate level for systemically providing hydroclimatic information in support of the broadest range of decisions in an equitable manner. The case studies highlight that effective decision support tools need to, and can, accommodate the unique needs of decision makers, including the specific mix of multiple products required to support their decisions, matching the level of information certainty and forecast skill with realistic decision requirements, supporting varying technical sophistication, and reflecting users’ varying roles within decision making processes.

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Jul 1st, 12:00 AM

Strategies and Tactics for the Design of Hydroclimatic Decision Support Tools

The U.S. national investment in remote sensing systems, supercomputers, hydroclimatic research, and scientist education has produced significant advances in hydroclimatic monitoring, understanding, and predictive capabilities. However, realization of socio-economic benefits from those investments remains incomplete, for many reasons. Experience within the Climate Assessment for the Southwest (CLIMAS) has clarified commonalities across sectors and stakeholders on which to base systemic advancement of hydroclimatic decision support tools. Case studies of six very different tools, developed through CLIMAS activities and emphasizing human factors in the use of environmental information, are used to illustrate user-centric strategies and tactics for developing effective decision support tools. The case studies include a forecast evaluation tool, an information portfolio management system, a hydrologic alert system, tools for drought analysis of paleoclimatological flow reconstructions, a tool for customizing probabilistic forecasts, and a guided compendium of tools for considering climate change in water planning and management. Our design framework reflects that because decisions are made through the integration of knowledge and wisdom, with the latter more complex, diverse, and changeable than can be practically programmed in traditional computerized decision support tools, knowledge development is the most appropriate level for systemically providing hydroclimatic information in support of the broadest range of decisions in an equitable manner. The case studies highlight that effective decision support tools need to, and can, accommodate the unique needs of decision makers, including the specific mix of multiple products required to support their decisions, matching the level of information certainty and forecast skill with realistic decision requirements, supporting varying technical sophistication, and reflecting users’ varying roles within decision making processes.