Status and perspectives of hydrological research in small basins in Europe

H. Holzmann


There is an uncontradicted consensus that experimental basin research plays an important role for the understanding of hydrological processes. Based on this, deepened knowledge concepts and hydrological models have been developed, which enable and support water management planning and decision making in all facets of hydrologically driven aspects like floods, climate change impact and environmental research. The following paper starts with a brief introduction to the history of hydrological monitoring and the initiation of hydrological research based on experimental watersheds. It highlights the international activities promoting and disseminating these kind of field research. Due to the personal involvement of the author, a special focus is given to the activities of the Euro-Mediterranean Network of Experimental and Representative Basins ERB and on the recent experimental basins inventory in Austria. As collection and provision of data form an important prerequisite for any further hydrological assessment, it is proposed that data sets and their providers in charge have to be cited and acknowledged in the research papers. These citations should gain the equivalent evaluation and ranking of paper citations and could stimulate the willingness for data provision. As a conclusion it can be stated that experimental basin research is carried out worldwide, but there is a lack of international communication among the stakeholders. A future development should therefore strengthen the communication platforms and foster extended data exchange.


Experimental basin; hydrological research; hydrological monitoring; hydrological data

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