Scientific Understanding and Analysis

Integrated Flood Management calls for a multidisciplinary approach to flood management, involving various stakeholders. It promotes a dialogue among professionals from various disciplines with members of the affected communities, to explore, among others, shared perceptions and common goals. These disciplines include practitioners and researchers from various fields: ranging from public administration, agriculture, sociology, geography, ecology, hydrology/hydraulics, morphology, river engineering, etc. Such a multidisciplinary approach must be based on accessible information, a common language for the debate and a transparent decision-making process.

Scientific knowledge of basic concepts concerning the morphology and ecology of rivers and their flood plains, and how these are driven by the flow regime, is fundamental to understanding the ecosystem processes in a river basin and the impacts of flood management measures on those ecosystems. Environmentally sensitive design, execution and operation of new projects; and mitigation of adverse impacts of existing works through better operation and restoration can be undertaken, only if such scientific concepts are well understood.


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Figure: Federal Interagency Stream Restoration Working Group (2001)