Generation of information and decision making
A good information management provides the essential data necessary to be able to take informed and transparent decisions.
As described above, information is generated, managed and used by the water related stakeholders. Most of the basic institutional roles in Integrated River Basin Management (IRBM) belong to the public domain while services are often also provided by the private sector.
Figure 2 associates a typical set of ministries, authorities and companies with the different roles in IRBM:
As previously illustrated, decision making in IRBM relies on the timely availability of reliable information in order to assess the status of water resources, compare alternative solutions, monitor implementation and consequently take adequate strategic and operational decisions.
Water related information as e.g. hydro-meteorological time series, water quality and water demand data is not only used by the above described actors but is also generated by them. Hence the monitoring strategy and quality of each public or private sector institution and their inter-linkages plays a key role in information generation.
Decisions are taken by many different institutions in a river basin and rely upon multiple sources of information. Figure 3 describes in an exemplary way some institutions generating information which may be used for various types of decision making towards a coordinated management.
As shown in Figure 3, the data used for DSS may come from various sources and institutions. Each institution is typically employing specific software, data formats, protocols etc. This often leads to the fact that information generated by one institution cannot directly be used by another often leading to either time lags or complete information gaps. Thus there is a clear demand to improve data sharing and interoperability of information relevant for river basin management (and other uses). Interoperability is a key aspect supporting a coordinated approach to river basin management.