Translating Advances in Forecasting to Inform Water Resources Management

Translating Advances in Forecasting to Inform Water Resources Management

Save the Date: April 3-4, 2018

Location: 1200 New York Avenue, NW, Washington, D.C. 20005 in the auditorium of the American Association for the Advancement of Science building

Registration: Click here

Background: In times of record breaking floods and droughts, policymakers and the public are becoming increasingly aware of the need to improve the operation of the nation’s water resources. To maintain access to reliable and affordable water supply, water managers must regularly make decisions under uncertainty. Weather and water forecasts are important tools to minimize this uncertainty but can be difficult to incorporate into decision-making processes.

In an effort to address this challenge, NOAA recently created the National Water Center to bring together scientists from different agencies and produce the first continental United States water forecast. Additionally, the 2017 Weather Act requests NOAA to improve forecasts on subseasonal and seasonal time scales which could be instrumental to future water resource management.

Bringing together scientists and managers from across the United States, the primary goal for this workshop is to identify opportunities for more effective collaboration between forecasters and water managers. During the workshop, we will take stock of the current quality and use of weather and streamflow forecasts in different regions on different time scales (days to months).


Topics of interest:

  • How can forecasts become more useful to water managers?
  • How can decision-making processes take full advantage of available forecasts?
  • How can forecasters and water managers work together to best take advantage of future improvements in in forecast skill?
  • How will subseasonal and seasonal forecasts develop? How will they affect water resource managers?
  • What are the most promising place-based and federal policy options for reducing future U.S. risk? How do public, private and academic partnerships fit into these policy options?


Draft Agenda

Tuesday April 3, 2018

8:00 AM           Registration and light breakfast

8:30 AM           Welcome Paul Higgins, Director AMS Policy Program

8:35 AM           Overview Andy Miller and Annalise Blum, Postdocs AMS Policy Program

8:45 AM           Operations: Creation of forecasts and their use in water management

Cherie Schultz, Interstate Commission on the Potomac River Basin

Stephen King, Northwest River Forecast Center

Rob Shedd, Mid-Atlantic River Forecast Center

Bob Rose, Lower Colorado River Authority

9:30 AM           Discussion

10:30 AM         Break

11:00 AM         Keynote: The role of the National Water Center

                          Peter Colohan, National Water Center

11:30 AM         Discussion

12:00 PM         Networking lunch

1:00 PM           How could forecasts be more useful to water managers? How can decision-making processes take advantage of available forecasts?

                       Kenneth Nowak, Bureau of Reclamation

           James Porter, NYC Department of Water

                       Curtis Jawdy, Tennessee Valley Authority

1:45 PM          Discussion

2:30 PM          Break

3:00 PM          What are the policy challenges and opportunities in translating forecasts to inform water management?

                        Jeanine Jones, California Department of Water Resources

            Betsy Cody, University of Maryland / former CRS

3:45 PM           Discussion

4:30 PM           End of Day 1


Wednesday April 4, 2018

8:00 AM           Light breakfast

8:30 AM           Review of yesterday

            Annalise Blum, Postdoctoral fellow, Johns Hopkins and AMS Policy Program

8:45 AM           Looking to the future I:  New data to meet information needs of water resource managers

Julie Kiang, U.S. Geological Survey

Dan Sheer, Johns Hopkins and HydroLogics

Augusto Getirana, NASA

9:30 AM           Discussion

10:15 AM         Break

10:45 AM         Looking to the future II: Given advancements in modeling, how do we expect forecasts to improve?

                        Sarah Kapnick, GFDL

                        Bart Nijssen, University of Washington

                        Invited: Andrew Robertson, Columbia University

11:30 AM         Discussion

12:15 PM         Synthesis and conclusion

            Andy Miller, Postdoctoral fellow, AMS Policy Program

12:30 PM         Workshop concludes

Note: Each speaker is given ~15 min followed by a panel discussion


If you have any questions, please contact Kenza Sidi-Ali-Cherif at, or by phone at (202) 355-9812.