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Does Socioeconomic Feedback Matter for Water Models?
- Langarudi, Saeed P., Maxwell, Connie M., Bai, Yining, Hanson, Austin, Fernald, Alexander
- Ecological economics 2019 v.159 pp. 35-45
- ecology, economic development, hydrologic factors, hydrologic models, irrigated farming, policy analysis, water management, New Mexico
- While integrated systems approaches have been recognized as critical for management of the ecology, water resources management models typically ignore a defining feature — feedback mechanisms between socioeconomic and hydrologic variables. They treat essential variables such as population, economic growth, and sometimes even irrigated land, as exogenous drivers. In this paper, a minimalistic “closed-loop” social hydrology model is developed for a southern region in New Mexico and compared to an “open-loop” (partially exogenously driven) model. Results reveal that the integration of the social feedback links into a hydrology system may change the implications of water-related policy analysis. The introduced closed-loop model can serve as a generic structure for any social hydrology system.