Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-2021-644
https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-2021-644
 
17 Jan 2022
17 Jan 2022
Status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal HESS.

HESS Opinions: Participatory Digital Earth Twin Hydrology systems (DARTHs) for everyone: a blueprint for hydrologists

Riccardo Rigon1, Giuseppe Formetta2, Marialaura Bancheri3, Niccolò Tubini2, Concetta D'Amato1, Olaf David4, and Christian Massari5 Riccardo Rigon et al.
  • 1Center Agriculture Food Environment - C3A, University of Trento, Trento, Italy
  • 2Department of Civil, Environmental and Mechanical Engineering - DICAM, Trento, Italy
  • 3Institute for Mediterranean Agricultural and Forestry Systems (ISAFOM), National Research Council (CNR), Italy
  • 4Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO, USA
  • 5National Research Council, Research Institute for Geo-Hydrological Protection, Perugia, Italy

Abstract. The Digital Earth (DE) metaphor is very useful for both end users and for hydrological modellers (i.e., the coders). However, in literature it can promote the erroneous view of models as a commodity, that is a basic good used in commerce that is interchangeable with other goods of the same type, without any warning about the fact that some models work better than others, some models just work while others can be simply wrong. These distinctions are at the core of doing good science. This opinion contribution, on the one hand, tries to accept the challenge of adopting models as commodities but, on the other, it wants to show that this acceptance comes with some consequences as to how models must be structured. We analyse different categories of models, with the view of making them part of a Digital eARth Twin Hydrology system (called DARTH). We also stress the idea that DARTHs are not models in and of themselves, rather they need to be built on an appropriate infrastructure that provides some basic services for connection to input data and allows for a modelling-by-components strategy, which, we argue, is the right one for accomplishing the requirements of the DE. The urgency for DARTHs to be Open Source and well written pieces of codes is discussed here in light of the Open Science movement and its ideas. The need to tie predictions to an estimated confidence interval is also supported. Finally, it is argued that DARTHs must promote a new participatory way of doing hydrological science, where researchers can contribute cooperatively to characterize and control model outcomes in various territories. Furthermore, this has consequences for the engineering of the systems.

Riccardo Rigon et al.

Status: final response (author comments only)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • RC1: 'Comment on hess-2021-644', Markus Hrachowitz, 04 Feb 2022
    • AC1: 'Reply on RC1', Riccardo Rigon, 16 Mar 2022
  • RC2: 'Comment on hess-2021-644', Uwe Ehret, 15 Feb 2022
    • AC2: 'Reply on RC2', Riccardo Rigon, 16 Mar 2022

Riccardo Rigon et al.

Riccardo Rigon et al.

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Short summary
The Digital Earth (DE) metaphor is very useful for both end users and for hydrological modellers. We analyse different categories of models, with the view of making them part of a Digital eARth Twin Hydrology system (called DARTH). We also stress the idea that DARTHs are not models in and of themselves, rather they need to be built on an appropriate information technology infrastructure. The urgency for DARTHs to be in light of the Open Science movement and its ideas.
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