Communicating uncertainty in hydro-meteorological forecasts: Mission impossible?

Maria Helena Ramos*, Thibault Mathevet, Jutta Thielen, Florian Pappenberger

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

59 Citations (Scopus)


There is a common agreement in the scientific community that communicating uncertain hydro-meteorological forecasts to water managers, civil protection authorities and other stakeholders is far from being a resolved issue. This paper focuses on the communication of uncertain hydrological forecasts to decision-makers such as operational hydrologists and water managers in charge of flood warning and scenario-based reservoir operation. Results from case studies conducted together with flood forecasting experts in Europe and operational forecasters from the hydroelectric sector in France are presented. They illustrate some key issues on dealing with probabilistic hydro-meteorological forecasts and communicating uncertainty in operational flood forecasting.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)223-235
Number of pages13
JournalMeteorological Applications
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2010


  • Ensemble flood forecasts
  • Hydrometeorology
  • Uncertainty communication

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