Data Stories

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Valuing Data

Without clear value propositions demonstrating how water data improves outcomes, investment in water data will remain minimal. Learn why data are hard to value and how to assess value.

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Share your own example of how water data led to better outcomes within your organization.

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Nicole Geri @ Unsplash

As we work to create an internet of water – a world with more accessible, discoverable, and interoperable water data – we like to highlight the organizations who are contributing to this vision and explore the benefits they provide to water management and other sectors. The Groundwater Protection Council has been improving groundwater and energy data since 1983 and leverages that data to enable environmental protection and increased water availability. The resources they provide to state oil and gas agencies are essential to coordinating regional approaches in the energy-water nexus.

The Albuquerque Bernalillo County Water Utility Authority (Water Authority) of Albuquerque, New Mexico has been expanding its advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) program since 2011. As of 2019, 49% of its 200,000 accounts have been replaced with AMI-enabled meters. The Water Authority harnesses the high-resolution water usage, along with other AMI data, to benefit their employees, customers, operations, and water resources.

U.S. Geological Survey stream gage data are used by organizations to better manage floods through reservoir operations and design, flood forecasting, and floodplain management. The estimated benefits of stream gage data for flood-related decisions were assessed using direct surveys and the Business Model Maturity Index method. The value of data varied dramatically depending on whether the data were considered responsible for the full benefit of flood management decisions or a relative contribution to the decision.