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Developing Useful Science: Methods for Engaging Stakeholders and Evaluating Integrated Climate Tools
This project evaluates water supply forecasts in the Upper Colorado River Basin by developing a series of rigorous user-needs assessments. Project goals include (1) improving the Colorado Basin River Forecast Center’s water supply forecasts for various user groups; (2) expanding the user-base and enhancing their understanding of forecasts; and (3) understanding the role of uncertainty and risk in interpreting and applying the forecast. This research uses a variety of social science methods to help product developers identify, engage, and build relationships with diverse users, with the end goal of constructing more useful climate products. These methods include educational workshops, focus groups, structured interviews, surveys, and decision games.