Fostering Conducive Conditions for Climate Assessments: Collaborative Scenario Planning and the Colorado River Basin Study

Project Dates

The Colorado River Basin Supply and Demand Study, conducted by the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, was an unprecedented attempt to bring together a variety of experts and stakeholders from the watershed to address the current imbalance between supply and demand from 2012 through 2060. The study is also the largest scenario-planning project ever to be conducted by the Bureau of Reclamation. While most scenarios are either an expert scenario model or a stakeholder-defined scenario, the study incorporated aspects from both models, creating a collaborative model. Researchers hypothesize that this collaborative scenario planning process makes it easier for stakeholders to find common ground on pathways to address common challenges, and that it fosters the use of climate change information in decision making. This project aims to evaluate the aforementioned hypotheses through critical evaluation of the basin study scenario planning activity and basin study participant responses to interview questions.