Hydrology Corner Blog: Stream Gauging

messy rivers hydrology corner blog

Messy Rivers are Healthy Rivers

Dr. Ellen Wohl provoked the audience to give thought to how we evaluate river health in her keynote address to the Riverflow 2016 Conference in St. Louis Missouri. Mindfulness of one’s own motivations and openness to a broader perspective is a good starting place for this discussion. Whereas a concrete-lined drainage ditch is highly functional in one world-view, a poorly drained swamp can be highly functional in a different world view. In order to understand rivers we need to be self-aware of our place in the natural order of things.

Zen and the Art of Stream Gauging

Those who work closely with data recognize the value of incremental investment in data quality; however, there is despair that this value can be quantized in terms that are meaningful to the bean-counters who control and allocate funding for monitoring programs. The discussion prompted by ‘Economics of Data Quality’ remind me of aspects of the novel ‘Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance’ by Robert Pirsig. The story is about many things but it is mostly about a search for quality.