Aug 25

From Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP)

Environmental Decision Making Cluster August 25, 2009

Ed Armstrong, Chuck Hutchinson, Bob Chen, Karl Benedict, Chris Lenhardt, Chuck Wooldridge, Yuechen Chi, Phil Yang, Will Pozzi, Brand Niemann, Ken Keiser, Ana Prados, Bill Teng, Carol Meyer, Rob Raskin, Bob Downs, Drew Pilant, Gregg Foti

Recap of Summer 2009 discussion in July

  • Needs of decision makers
  • How does data integrate into available tools
  • Are environmental indicators realistic, appropriate?
  • Need for case studies and success stories
  • What added value is being provided to data products?
  • What language barriers exist between scientists and policy makers?
  • Is IT overpromised?
  • What are the metrics for decision making? Where are the limitations?
  • Human aspects of organizations – who needs to be involved?
  • Alignment with other activities in ESIP Federation
  • General links to social scientists – how to improve engagement to improve decision making
  • How this links to specific agency initiatives
  • Need to involve decision makers in the discussion – ad hoc approach to decision making at present

IRIS activity – USGS and NOAA integrated water planning system

Winter 2010 Meeting (January 5-7, 2010 in Washington, DC)

Environmental Decision Making Theme Need to identify plenary speakers and breakout topics

  • Characterize decision making levels (national, local (ground level), private) – how to engage them
  • Need to modularize decision making systems so that they can ingest many types of data inputs
  • Incorporate semantic technologies (per the Asian Water Cycle Initiative)
  • Congress’ interest in improving decision making – possible talk by Pam Whitney (House Science and Technology Committee)
  • Dan Riefschneider, Deputy Director of Sustainable Development, (climate negotiations and a political scientist) State Department (Bob Chen)
  • Representatives from RISAs (SECC – Southeast Climate Consortium)
  • IBM’s global water initiative – Galway Bay (Ireland) test case (Lenhardt); Australian Water Resource initiative

Breakout Topics:

  • Metrics/Case Studies (Air Quality Regulation – Ana Prados)
  • Improving Tools (make them more modular); how to improve social scientist activity with community; improving decision making procedures
  • Environmental Indicators – what is used in decision making (Bob Chen)
  • Communicating Science to Decision Makers/Research Translation
  • How do decision makers integrate new data/services into existing operational environment?
  • What motivates decision makers to be engaged with us to improve decision making?
  • Scientists who have successful connections to decision making communities (Research Science Applications Lab at NCAR) (Hutchinson)
  • Modeling future behavior
  • Intelligence and defense communities (National Intelligence Council) – climate security initiative at NAS (Bob Chen)
  • Case Studies; Methodology (IT – interoperability, tools, integration); Metrics (how to measure success; indicators)

Possible Outcomes:

  • Open up channels of communication
  • Off-the-shelf tools people are using (especially good ones)
  • What is missing (from point of view of policy makers)? How can we aid improved (informed) decision making?

Other Business:

IN 17 – Data and Informatics for Environmental Decision Making Session at AGU – abstracts welcome through Sept. 3

Chair and Vice Chair for Cluster

  • Rob Raskin has served as interim chair, would like to seat a permanent chair and vice chair
  • Ana Prados would be willing to co-chair or serve as vice chair with someone else
  • Chuck Hutchinson would be willing to co-chair
  • Meet Monthly, possibly bi-weekly as needed