Why a Policy Support System? Examples from the Andes BFP
Why a PSS?
Policies are better when based on the science (natural and social), so
how do we get the analysts to look at the science? - make it accessible,
easily understood and relevant to their needs.
What is a PSS (Policy Support System) :
•combines best available data and knowledge of process (models),
•integrated spatial database and test-bed for user policies or
•leaving the simplest possible messages without losing the important
complexity of the data and the science,
• a flexible and dynamic project legacy in addition to static data and
•visual and informative to a wide range of audiences, a learning and
•A clearly defined output requiring specific inputs (sub-models) from
each WP in the BFP,
The SimTerra PSS framework and the AguaAndes PSS
FRAMEWORK (Web and
geo-browser based user
FRAMEWORK FIESTA, PATTERN... DATABASE
(collection of tools (>2TB of global data
for analysis and at 1km and 1ha resolution)
The AguaAndes PSS so far.
It is different things to different people. The interface changes
for scientists (detailed, shown), policy makers (less detailed)
...with links to the subsystems (this is hydrology)...
...and from there to the relevant part of the documentation (not yet written!)
You start by defining the area you want support for. The SimTerra database has 1 degree raster
tiles (@100m resolution, shown) and 10 degree tiles at 1km resolution)
If you are logged in as a scientist you then access the simulation parameters which can be edited
(collaboratively) in a Google spreadsheet (which AguaAndes then reads)
AguaAndes will then download all of the datasets necessary to
run the simulation for your chosen tile. You can add your own
data if you have better data.
The data are downloaded to your workspace on our servers (since AguaAndes
runs on our servers not your local machine). Links are provided so that you can
download any data which are not copyrighted or you can view the data in situ.
These are 3-hourly gridded
rainfall series for your tile from
This is 1km rainfall for your tile from the SimTerra database
This is 90m resolution elevation for your tile