Book Chapter

Book Title

Decision-Support Experiments and Evaluations using Seasonal to Inter-annual Forecasts and Observational Data: A Focus on Water Resources


Anne M. Waple, STG Inc.

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Faced with mounting pressures from a changing climate, an increasing population, a transitory populace, and varying access to available natural resources, decision makers, scientists, and resource managers have an immediate need to understand, obtain, and better integrate climate forecasts and observational data in near- and long-term planning. Reducing our societal vulnerability to variabilities and changes in climate depends upon our ability to bridge the gap between climate science and the implementation of scientific understanding in our management of critical resources, arguably the most important of which is water. Our ability to adapt and respond to climate variability and change depends, in large part, on our understanding of the climate and how to incorporate this understanding into our resource management decisions. This Product focuses on the connection between the scientific ability to predict climate on seasonal scales and the opportunity to incorporate such understanding into water resource management decisions. It directly addresses decision support experiments and evaluations that have used seasonal-to-interannual forecasts and observational data, and is expected to inform (1) decision makers about the relative success of experiences of others who have experimented with these forecasts and data in resource management; (2) climatologists, hydrologists, and social scientists on how to advance the delivery of decision-support resources that use the most recent forecast products, methodologies, and tools; and (3) science and resource managers as they plan for future investments in research related to forecasts and their role in decision support. It is important to note, however, that while the focus of this Product is on the water resources management sector, the findings within this Synthesis and Assessment Product may be directly transferred to other sectors.



Publication Date



Washington, D.C.


U.S. Climate Change Science Program




Synthesis and Assessment Product 5.3 Report by the U.S. Climate Change Science Program and the Subcommittee on Global Change Research

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The Changing Context

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