Pictures courtesy of the National Weather Service, NASA and the NOAA Library

The Future Role of the Human in the Forecast Process – An Interactive Forum

(Brought to you by the AMS Board for Operational Government Meteorologists and AMS Weather and Forecasting Committee)

Thanks to everyone for making the Forum on the Future Role of the Human in the Forecast Process such a success.  The summary of the proceedings can be found at the links below:

 

Presentation 1 – Introduction with discussion and references to previous studies

Presentation 2 – Summary of sessions 1 and 2 conducted 13-14 January 2004 at AMS Annual meeting in Seattle, WA

 

Please be sure to go to http://www.nwstc.noaa.gov/cgi/dcforum/dcboard.cgi for discussion of issues related to the role of the human in the forecast process.

 

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Issues and references are below:

 

Issue:  The process by which the forecasts are produced, and methods for creation of new products by the various sectors of our profession, is becoming increasingly automated.

 

Problems:

  • Will humans be able to add value to computer-generated forecasts and warnings, to remain a necessary element of the forecast process? 
  • What does this mean for the future of our profession? 
  • Will there be a reduced need for human intervention in the overall forecast and warning process? 
  • What role should humans have in the evolving forecast process?
  • What education, training and skill sets will be needed in the future?

 

Intentions of this forum:

  • To establish a foundation for additional, routine forums on the evolving role of the human in the forecast process. 
  • To provide input to decision-makers, to influence their perceptions of how to keep humans in the forecast process.

 

1. Duties of a forecaster

2. Characteristics of a good forecaster 

 

Suggested References (not required, but will provide important insight into the issue)*

 

Models, Forecasters, and Interactive Forecast Preparation in the new millennium.  David P. Ruth

IFPS and the future of the National Weather Service. Clifford F. Mass

Whither the Weather Analysis and Forecasting Process? Lance F. Bosart

Meteorological Services of Canada Forecaster Forum Agenda

Meteorological Services of Canada Forecaster Forum Presentations

The Possible Future Role of Humans in Weather Forecasting.  Harold Brooks

 

3.What are the current strengths and weaknesses of operational forecasters?

 

Suggested References (not required, but will provide important insight into the issue)*

 

Whither the Weather Analysis and Forecasting Process?  Lance F. Bosart

The role of diagnosis in weather forecasting. Charles A. Doswell III and Robert A. Maddox

The human element in weather forecasting. Charles A. Doswell III

What does it take to be a good forecaster?  Chuck Doswell

Is there a role for humans in the NWS of the future, and is there an NWS in our future at all?  Chuck Doswell


4.What is the appropriate role for NWP in the forecast process? 

 

Suggested References (not required, but will provide important insight into the issue)*

 

More thoughts on the future of weather forecasting (Models, MOS, Education, and Training).  Charles A. Doswell III

Human forecasters and technology.  Harold Brooks

The future of weather forecasting:The eras of revolution and reconstruction.  Harold E. Brooks, J. Michael Fritsch, Charles A. Doswell III

A vision for the National Weather Service:Roadmap for the future.  National Academy of Sciences, National Research Council


5.What tools would best serve operational forecasters, how should they be designed and tested? (could include improvements in guidance, forecast composition methods, programming and testing methods of software)

 

Suggested References (not required, but will provide important insight into the issue)*

 

The New Digital Forecast Database of the National Weather Service.  Harry R. Glahn and David P. Ruth

Public-private sector roles:NWS goes digital.  Edward Johnson

Weather radar:Technology beyond NEXRAD.  National Academy of Sciences, National Research Council


6.What knowledge and training is needed for operational forecasters to take advantage of new technology and NWP guidance?

 

Suggested References (not required, but will provide important insight into the issue)*

 

NWS Training plan and resources.

A modest proposal for forecaster training.  Chuck Doswell


7.How must forecasts be evaluated and verified? 

 

Suggested References (not required, but will provide important insight into the issue)*

 

A proposed gridded QPF verification scheme for the Western Region in GFE.  Linda Cheng

A Comparison of Measures-Oriented and Distributions-Oriented Approaches to Forecast Verification.  Harold E. Brooks and Charles A. Doswell III


8.How should we increase the role of probabilistic forecasts, and help users understand probabilistic forecasts?

 

Suggested References (not required, but will provide important insight into the issue)*

 

Probabilistic Forecasting - A Primer.  Chuck Doswell and Harold Brooks

Communicating Uncertainties in Weather and Climate Information: A Workshop Summary.  National Academy of Sciences, National Research Council

Prediction Markets: The Best Possible Forecast?  Roger Pielke Jr. Ed.

Prediction versus Projection – Forecast versus Possibility.  Mike MacCracken

 

Other References*

 

Cognitive Task Analysis of the NWS Warning Forecaster position – NWS Warning Decision Training Branch link to Klein and Associates from Decisionmaking.com

Impact of Automation on Expertise – Powerpoint presentation from Warning Decision Training Branch, based on Dr. Gary Klein’s research

Fair weather:Effective partnerships in weather and climate services.  National Academy of Sciences, National Research Council

A climate services vision:First steps toward the future.  National Academy of Sciences, National Research Council

The changing employment scene for meteorology: How universities are adapting. Carol Rasmussen Ed.

Will for-profit meteorology take up the federal hiring slack?  Robert Henson

Why the Weather Research and Private Sector Weather Communities Need to Work Together.  Jim Block

The Future of the "Public-Private Partnership" Toward a More Synergistic Relationship in the 21st Century.  Michael R. Smith

 

*Some links may not be available depending on funding for online access to AMS journals. NWS personnel can access AMS journal articles from the NOAA Central Library.