Open-File Report 2012–1066
This report expands the Water Science Strategy that was begun in the USGS Science Strategy, “Facing Tomorrow’s Challenges—U.S. Geological Survey Science in the Decade 2007–2017” (U.S. Geological Survey, 2007). The report looks at the relevant issues facing society and develops a strategy built around observing, understanding, predicting, and delivering water science for the next 5 to 10 years by building new capabilities, tools, and delivery systems to meet the Nation’s water-resource needs. This report begins by presenting the vision of water science for the USGS and the societal issues that are influenced by, and in turn influence, the water resources of our Nation. The essence of the Water Strategic Science Plan is built on the concept of “water availability,” defined as spatial and temporal distribution of water quantity and quality, as related to human and ecosystem needs, as affected by human and natural influences. The report also describes the core capabilities of the USGS in water science—the strengths, partnerships, and science integrity that the USGS has built over its 130-year history.
Nine priority actions are presented in the report, which combine and elevate the numerous specific strategic actions listed throughout the report. Priority actions were developed as a means of providing the audience of this report with a list for focused attention, even if resources and time limit the ability of managers to address all of the strategic actions in the report. Priority actions focus on the following:
The body of the report is presented as a hierarchal set of 5 goals, 14 objectives, and 27 strategic actions that the USGS should undertake to advance water science through year 2022.
Scientific information produced on water resources would be without value if it were not communicated to society in a fashion that can inform decisions and actions. Therefore, the chapter following the goals describes how the USGS should inform, involve, and educate society about the science it produces. This includes discussions on local outreach and the use of social media for effective communication.
This report concludes with a chapter devoted to the crosscutting science issues of the Water Mission Area with the other USGS Mission Areas: Climate and Land Use Change, Core Science Systems, Ecosystems, Energy and Minerals, Environmental Health Science, and Natural Hazards. Not one of these Mission Areas stands alone—all must work together and integrate their actions to fulfill the USGS science mission for the future. This final chapter identifies the important linkages that must be realized and maintained for this integration to occur.
First posted June 4, 2012
Public Review Release—Feedback on this report will be accepted through August 1, 2012. To provide comments, please click below, then go to section marked "Offer your comments on our draft strategies": http://www.usgs.gov/start_with_science/
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Evenson, E.J., Orndorff, R.C., Blome, C.D., Bohlke, J.K., Herschberger, P.K., Langenheim, V.E., McCabe, G.J., Morlock, S.E., Reeves, H.W., Verdin, J.P., Weyers, H.S., and Wood, T.M., 2012, Strategic directions for U.S. Geological Survey water science, 2012–2022—Observing, understanding, predicting, and delivering water science to the Nation: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2012–1066, 42 p.
About This Report
Core Capabilities: Strengths, Partnerships, and Science Integration—What We Do Now That Is Important and Needs To Continue
Water Science Goals and Objectives
Communicating Science to Society: Inform—Involve—Educate
Crosscutting Science With Other USGS Mission Areas