Page Banner

United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Information Technology Applications in the ARS Watershed Network

Authors
item Steiner, Jean
item Goodrich, David
item Hardegree, Stuart
item Burkart, Michael
item Strickland, Timothy
item Alonso, Carlos
item Bryant, Ray
item Weltz, Mark

Submitted to: Interagency Conference on Research in the Watersheds
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: October 1, 2003
Publication Date: October 27, 2003
Citation: STEINER, J.L., GOODRICH, D.C., HARDEGREE, S.P., BURKART, M.R., STRICKLAND, T.C., ALONSO, C.V., BRYANT, R.B., WELTZ, M.A. INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY APPLICATIONS IN THE ARS WATERSHED NETWORK. PROCEEDINGS OF THE FIRST INTERAGENCY CONFERENCE ON RESEARCH IN THE WATERSHEDS. 2003. p. 62-67.

Interpretive Summary: Knowledge gaps relating to water supply, quality, and cycling processes have been identified as critical obstacles to improved water resource management in recent assessments. One critical gap identified was the lack of adequate data to evaluate climate and hydrologic processes, particularly variability associated with climate and hydrology that affects management responses. The USDA, Agricultural Research Service operates long-term research watersheds in major physiographic regions of the U.S. These watersheds provide under-utilized opportunities to evaluate interactions of land use change, management practices, and climate variability in national assessments. A pilot project is underway to increase accessibility and utility of ARS Watershed Network data for enhanced research programs and to support a wide array of stakeholders. Approaches include: 1) evaluate data management models in other ecological and natural resources research networks, 2) develop formats and standards for metadata and data files, involving researchers, end-users, informatics and data base management specialists and 3) develop a common platform to access the data from multiple locations. The overall objective is to provide improved access to the watershed data for internal and external researchers, while retaining local control of and responsibility for the data. New data management systems for the watershed are expected to reduce delays and costs of developing new research thrusts and partnerships and increase data availability across the entire period of data collection and across different types of data. Users would obtain high quality and timely data, consistent across watersheds. All of this could extend the application of ARS watershed research to ecologic and socioeconomic, as well as agricultural and water resources problem-solving.

Technical Abstract: Knowledge gaps relating to water supply, quality, and cycling processes have been identified as critical obstacles to improved water resource management in recent assessments. One critical gap identified was the lack of adequate data to evaluate climate and hydrologic processes, particularly variability associated with climate and hydrology that affects management responses. The USDA, Agricultural Research Service operates long-term research watersheds in major physiographic regions of the U.S. These watersheds provide under-utilized opportunities to evaluate interactions of land use change, management practices, and climate variability in national assessments. A pilot project is underway to increase accessibility and utility of ARS Watershed Network data for enhanced research programs and to support a wide array of stakeholders. Approaches include: 1) evaluate data management models in other ecological and natural resources research networks, 2) develop formats and standards for metadata and data files, involving researchers, end-users, informatics and data base management specialists and 3) develop a common platform to access the data from multiple locations. The overall objective is to provide improved access to the watershed data for internal and external researchers, while retaining local control of and responsibility for the data. New data management systems for the watershed are expected to reduce delays and costs of developing new research thrusts and partnerships, and increase data availability across the entire period of data collection and across different types of data. Users would obtain high quality and timely data, consistent across watersheds. All of this could extend the application of ARS watershed research to ecologic and socioeconomic, as well as agricultural and water resources problem-solving.

Last Modified: 4/16/2014
Footer Content Back to Top of Page