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AGU session on watershed modelling for water allocation

SEI researchers will convene a session 13 December on watershed modeling under uncertain conditions at the Fall Meeting of the American Geophysicists Union (AGU) in San Francisco, California.

The session, titled, “Addressing Uncertainty in Water Allocation Decision-Making through Watershed Modeling,” will take place 8:30 to 10 a.m. PST.

The conference will run in a hybrid format, welcoming in-person and virtual participants.

13 December 2023
San Francisco, United States and Online


Water allocation decisions are made under conditions of uncertainty in water resources systems, particularly in regions facing water scarcity and increasing demand. This uncertainty can lead to suboptimal water allocation decisions, resulting in negative impacts on the environment and society. Thus, water managers need effective decision-making tools, including watershed models, that can account for uncertainty and support efficient and equitable water resources. Watershed modeling provides estimates of future water availability under different scenarios, considering factors including socio-economic projections, climate and land use changes, and water management practices.

This session aims to cover:

  • Advances in watershed modeling tools and approaches for water allocation,
  • Evaluation of uncertainty in water allocation decisions and strategies, and methods to quantify and communicate uncertainty,
  • Best practices for integrating watershed modeling into decision-making processes, including stakeholder engagement, and
  • Case studies demonstrating water allocation modeling (e.g. WEAP) in different regions and contexts.

Invited speakers

  • Joaquin Esquivel, chair, California State Water Resources Control Board, “Models and Making Curtailments: How California Relied on Models for Water Allocation Decisions During the Worst Drought in 1,500 Years”
  • Mohammed Basheer, research fellow, Humboldt University of Berlin, “Dam Engineering and Equity Considerations in Nile River System Modeling”
  • Isabel Melina Balderrama, national coordinator of Bolivia WATCH and the Transition Project in support of the PPGIRH, “Enhancing Water Management: Tackling Uncertainty with Watershed Modeling – the Bolivia WATCH Program”
  • Jingshui Huang, chair of Hydrology and River Basin Management, Technical University of Munich, “Coping with Uncertainty in Water Management under Climate Change: the WE-ACT Solution”
  • Mouhamadou Lamine Faye, “Assessment of the Impact of Withdrawals, Climate Change and Recharge on Saline Intrusion in the Confined Sub-basaltic Aquifer of Dakar”
  • Charlotte C. Wagner, Scientist, Stockholm Environment Institute, “Integrated water and energy assessments support informed decision making and cooperation in the Syr Darya basin”
  • Seung Beom Seo, Assistant Professor, University of Seoul, “Improvement of Water Allocation Decisions Considering Drought Challenges with a Focus on Fairness”
  • Sandra R Villamizar, Assistant Professor, Industrial University of Santander, “A participatory process using multicriteria analysis to select the best hydrological model for a water supply basin in the Colombian Andes”


Event details

Date: Wed, Dec 13

Time: 8:30–10:00 a.m. PST

Place: Moscone Center, West, Rm 3000

SEI participants

Marina Mautner



Laura Forni

Water Program Director


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