From coarse resolution to practical solution: GRACE as a science communication and policymaking tool for sustainable groundwater management

Xu, L., Ferris, D., Huggins, X., Wong, J.S., Mohan, C., Sadri, S., Chandanpurkar, H.A., Sanyal, P., et al. (2023). From coarse resolution to practical solution: GRACE as a science communication and policymaking tool for sustainable groundwater management. Journal of Hydrology 623 e129845. 10.1016/j.jhydrol.2023.129845.

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Managing groundwater is challenging because its below-ground existence makes the resource difficult to monitor. GRACE is an important tool as it provides the opportunity to monitor the storage of groundwater. While GRACE-based groundwater studies have focused on many regions across the globe, studies that link scientific research to policymaking and groundwater practices are still limited. This paper aims to provide recommendations for the improved use of GRACE data for the purpose of sustainable groundwater management. To gain insight into this, a policy Delphi survey was conducted to collect opinions from both the academic and non-academic communities. Although opinions are divergent and a mismatch exists between what science (researchers) currently supplies and what users (practitioners) demand, we found that both communities acknowledged the potential of GRACE data and GRACE-derived products for groundwater management and would be willing to collaborate to develop projects for practical applications. Better communication between researchers and practitioners was recommended as key for greater application of GRACE-derived products into practice. Practitioners noted the need for reliable data for management responsibilities but prefer locally-observed data. The reliability of GRACE at local scales was raised by practitioners as a limitation despite advances in downscaling methods within the academic community. The survey reveals a shared desire for more comparison between GRACE-derived products with local measurements to determine whether GRACE products can be useful for informing local decisions. Using survey outcomes, we propose three recommendations to improve the usefulness of GRACE-derived and other remote sensing products for groundwater management and practices: improving communication strategies; increasing data accuracy, transparency and accessibility to build trust; and conducting solution-oriented research.

Item Type: Article
Research Programs: Biodiversity and Natural Resources (BNR)
Biodiversity and Natural Resources (BNR) > Integrated Biosphere Futures (IBF)
Biodiversity and Natural Resources (BNR) > Water Security (WAT)
Depositing User: Michaela Rossini
Date Deposited: 11 Jul 2023 13:13
Last Modified: 11 Jul 2023 13:13

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