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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Musings on a Model: CalSim II in California's Water Community

  • Author(s): Ferreira, Ines C.;
  • Tanaka, Stacy K.;
  • Hollinshead, Sarah P.;
  • Lund, Jay R.
  • et al.

Computer model results are becoming more prominent in water policy deliberations in California. CalSim II is the most prominent water management model in California, and has become central to a variety of water management and policy issues and controversies. This paper reports on the results of an extensive set of loosely-structured interviews with members of California’s technical and policy-oriented water management community regarding the use and development of CalSim II in California. The interviewers reflect on the thoughts of interviewees and how such interview activities can further policy-effective modeling and technical activities for water management. CalSim II is a complex model of a complex part of California’s changing multi-purpose water system. As such, analytical controversies and misunderstandings are inevitable. Ideally, a model and its associated data would perform an additional service as a forum to resolve technical controversies and continually improve quantitative understanding of the system. While CalSim II is generally seen as a significant improvement over previous models, a wide variety of ideas are suggested for improvements.

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