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Uncertainty in flood estimation.

Blazkova, S. and Beven, Keith J. (2009) Uncertainty in flood estimation. Structure and Infrastructure Engineering Maintenance, Management, Life-Cycle Design and Performance, 5 (4). pp. 325-332. ISSN 1744-8980

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Abstract

The objective of this contribution is to form a clear picture of uncertainties we encounter in flood estimation, including both real-time flood forecasting and simulation for flood risk estimation. In simulation, we prefer the thesis of equifinality to obtain global optima. Many models producing acceptable simulations can be considered as multiple working hypotheses about the system process representations. Some of those hypotheses might later be confirmed or rejected, given additional data. In GLUE (Generalized Likelihood Uncertainty Estimation) the parameter sets are sampled randomly from physically reasonable ranges, often using uniform sampling where there is no strong information about prior expectations of parameter values. The parameter sets are then used to generate different realizations of the model outputs, which are then evaluated using some criteria (measures of likelihood) to provide a weight associated with each parameter set. Likelihood here is used in a much broader sense than in statistical inference. If some limits of effective observation error can be specified prior to running any simulations, models predicting outside of those limits can then be rejected as non-behavioural. Thus, any model evaluation of this type needs to take account of the multiple sources of model error more explicitly. This, however, is difficult for realistic cases. The procedure for the GLUE methodology is illustrated in examples. Usability for practical problems is suggested and future development is outlined.

Item Type: Article
Journal or Publication Title: Structure and Infrastructure Engineering Maintenance, Management, Life-Cycle Design and Performance
Uncontrolled Keywords: Floods ; Uncertainty ; GLUE ; TOPMODEL
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
Departments: Faculty of Science and Technology > Lancaster Environment Centre
ID Code: 28007
Deposited By: Mr Richard Ingham
Deposited On: 30 Oct 2009 15:27
Refereed?: Yes
Published?: Published
Last Modified: 06 Sep 2013 19:33
Identification Number:
URI: http://eprints.lancs.ac.uk/id/eprint/28007

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