Putting humans in the loop: Social computing for Water Resources Management

Fraternali, Piero and Castelletti, Andrea and Rizzoli, Andrea Emilio and Soncini-Sessa, Rodolfo and Vaca Ruiz, Carmen (2012) Putting humans in the loop: Social computing for Water Resources Management. Environmental Modelling & Software, 37. pp. 68-77.

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The advent of online services, social networks, crowdsourcing, and seriousWeb games has promoted the emergence of a novel computation paradigm, where complex tasks are solved by exploiting the capacity of human beings and computer platforms in an integrated way. Water Resources Management systems can take advantage of human and social computation in several ways: collecting and validating data, complementing the analytic knowledge embodied in models with tacit knowledge from individuals and communities, using human sensors to monitor the variation of conditions at a fine grain and in real time, activating human networks to perform search tasks or actuate management actions. This exploratory paper overviews different forms of human and social computation and analyzes how they can be exploited to enhance the effectiveness of ICT-based Water Resources Management.

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