Water Sustainability Research at the University of Cincinnati

"The CUAHSI WDC has been instrumental to research activities of our group. We have both contributed and benefited from the WDC services. Our group focuses on microbial and nutrient contamination of surface water. We have developed a suite of stochastic fate and transport models, and we use them as foundation of systems-based risk and vulnerability assessment of water resources. We are also developing spatiotemporal metrics of water sustainability.

Our group has developed a Data Management System (DMS) to store and publish online the research data generated by USEPA in the East Fork watershed of the Little Miami, and in the Shepherd Creek watershed, both in the Cincinnati area. It is worth noting that USEPA considered several platforms for publishing their data, ultimately selecting the CUAHSI software stack for its ease of use and transparency. From our computing lab at UC, these data are published online and are available for anyone to download and analyze. We have used these data extensively, producing several research papers and PhD dissertations. We routinely use WDC services for access to data in other watersheds with impaired surface water.

Having access to standardized water data is a necessary condition for deep understanding and management of water. Prior to establishment of WDC services, searching for data, processing them and making them otherwise suitable for analysis and modeling would, even if successful, take a disproportionately large amount of time in any project. With the advent of WDC services, the amount of time dedicated to finding data is minimized, making more room for in-depth analysis of water patterns. As our understanding of a wide spectrum of processes and behaviors related to water increases, I believe that other types of data including socioeconomic, agricultural, etc, could become part of the WDC services."

-Lilit Yeghiazarian

Assistant Professor, University of Cincinnati

January 2015

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