Presented by Jeremy Bird at the 2014 Water for Food Global Conference held in Seattle, Washington USA, October 19-22, 2014.
Earth observations, computing power and mobile phone coverage offer a bewildering array of new opportunities to improve the management of water resources. They can be used across a range of scales and can increase the resilience of societies to external shocks, whether climate or market driven. The availability of processed data can short circuit current information gaps and restrictive practices. Although ‘big data’ alone may not be sufficient to revitalize agricultural water management, it is a necessary and promising step to rethinking priorities and targeting interventions.