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Author: Florian Pappenberger

Comparing forecasting in 1939 to today

Comparing forecasting in 1939 to today

“From the prophecies of the Ancients to the crystal-gazing of the Moderns, man’s urge to know his fate has been in opposition to the wisdom of a Providence that mercifully cloaks the future and reduces the outlook largely to speculation; and flood-forecasting, in the general sense, is an example of this characteristically human effort to foretell events.” [1] We pride ourselves on improving forecasting from year to year. We can show that  discharge forecasts improves by roughly 1.8 days a…

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Hydrological Ensemble forecasting – financial investment vs return

Hydrological Ensemble forecasting – financial investment vs return

by Hannah Cloke, Fredrik Wetterhall and Florian Pappenberger Within the HEPEX community we all understand very well that hydrological (ensemble) forecasting is hard work. Massive effort goes into developing the systems, huge resources go into running them and there is much sweat over making decisions. Entire PhDs, or indeed careers, are spent on getting a system to work or to be used effectively. In most cases there are still mountains to climb before we reach our current goals. To motivate…

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Using the Web for Environmental Big Data

Using the Web for Environmental Big Data

Contributed by Claudia Vitolo and Wouter Buytaert (Civil and Environmental Engineering, Imperial College London) About 90% of all the data in the world has been generated over the last two years1. At this rate, in 2015 we are expected to deal with 7.9 ZB (1 ZB = 1012 GB) of data, increasing to 35 ZB in the next five years2. A considerable share of these Big Data is the result of environmental related activities3,4 via computer simulation, as well as…

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What makes a forecast with uncertainty valuable to practitioners?

What makes a forecast with uncertainty valuable to practitioners?

by Sarah Michaels (University of Nebraska) “the extent to which forecasts shape decision making under uncertainty is the true measure of the worth of a forecast” For forecasts to be useful requires they be scientifically justified, the information conveyed valuable and action can be taken based on them that lead to desired outcomes. While users may or may not be able to assess the calibre of the science and the modeling, they can more readily determine if the outputs of…

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The model, the forecast and the forecaster

The model, the forecast and the forecaster

by Jan Danhelka, a HEPEX 2015 Guest Columnist I have to start my first HEPEX blog post by a short introduction of myself. I have more than 10 years of experience in real time hydrological forecasting and modelling. Those years (un)fortunately included quite a few large (in some cases truly catastrophic) floods of different nature including the 2002 large scale summer flood, the 2006 winter flood and many flash floods events, in particular in 2006 and 2009. What I have…

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