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The iEMSs goes social

Dear iEMSs members,

starting from now you will be able to follow the iEMSs also on social media such as Facebook and Twitter. We have created a new page on Facebook ( and a new account on Twitter (@iEMSs1) which you can follow. All content published on our website will be broadcasted on Facebook and Twitter. 



The OGC and OpenMI Association to advance computer modelling standards


The Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC®) and the OpenMI Association announced that they recently signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to cooperate in standards development and promotion of open standards related to computer modelling. A first priority will be the facilitation of OpenMI 2.0 as an open international consensus standard under the OGC process framework.

More available at:

EDSS for wastewater management: Summerschool in Girona


Environmental Decision Support Systems (EDSS): A Tool for Wastewater Management in the XXI Century”

Place: University of Girona, Girona, Catalunya, Spain.

Dates: 4/07/2011 – 8/07/2011


Description: The course is intended to immerse the participants during one week in the most advanced decision-making support tools and methods for the wastewater management. The course will include some theoretical sessions to present the potential applications of EDSS and how this systems can provide robustness, objectivity and integration of knowledge in the wide range of current challenges in wastewater management. The course is going to combine theoretical sessions in the mornings with practical computer sessions during the afternoons. The last day (Friday 8) a visit to a WWTP operated by an EDSS is scheduled.


Applied Bayesian Statistics School


June, 20 – 24, 2011 – Bolzano/Bozen, Italy
Prof.  Alan Gelfand 
J.B. Duke Professor of Statistics and Decision Sciences
Department of Statistical Science, Duke University
Durham, NC, USA
Programme and registration details are available at
Interested people are invited to contact the ABS11 Secretariat at

EMS Impact Factor is growing

Dear colleagues,

We would like to share very good news with you: the impact factor of the EMS journal has again increased during the last year. Thus, in 2009 the journal’s IF is 3.085.

We hope to receive even more interesting and novel submissions from you!


Best Paper Awards for 2008


Best Paper Awards for 2008

As one of its initiatives, the Editorial Board of EMS instituted annual Best Paper Awards inaugurally in 2005. The aim of the awards is to recognize those authors whose paper epitomizes the aims, scope and high standards of the journal. It is essential that first of all candidate papers display high quality, innovation and rigour such as in the way their model or software testing is performed and reported. But they must also be interdisciplinary in their problem treatment and reasonably generic in their utility. For papers published in 2008 the Editors have decided for a second straight year to make a single award in each of three categories: Integrated Modelling; Generic Modelling and/or Software Methods; and Decision Support.

With support from Board members, we are pleased to report on the selections of the three Editors of EMS. The “Best Paper 2008: Integrated Modelling” category was awarded to Yuqiong Liu, Hoshin Gupta, Everett Springer and Thorsten Wagener for “Linking science with environmental decision making: Experiences from an integrated modelling approach to support sustainable water resources management.” In this paper the challenges involved in bridging science and decision making in water resources management are discussed with reference to lessons drawn from a long term integrated modelling project in the semi-arid southwestern USA. The authors present a generic framework and guidelines for effective decision support using integrated modelling and scenario analysis. The proposed approach aims to produce ‘usable’ scientific information, by improving its credibility, legitimacy and saliency for decision support.

The “Best Paper 2008: Generic Modelling and/or Software” category is “Integrating fuzzy multicriteria analysis and uncertainty evaluation in life cycle assessment” by Enrico Benetto, Christiane Dujet and Patrick Rousseaux. In this paper Life Cycle Assessment is combined with a fuzzy multicriteria evaluation technique to improve interpretation of impact assessment results and incorporate uncertainty analysis. The proposed methodology is demonstrated in an application to the LCA of electricity production scenarios.

The “Best Paper 2008: Decision Support” category was awarded to Rachel Warren, Santiago de la Nava Santos, Nigel Arnell, Michael Bane, Terry Barker, Christopher
Barton, Rupert Ford, Hans-Martin Füssel, Robin Hankin, Jochen Hinkel, Rupert Klein, Ciaron Linstead, Jonathan Kohler, Tim Mitchell, Tim Osborn, Haoran Pan, Sarah Raper, Graham Riley, John Schellnhüber, Sarah Winne and Dennis Anderson for “Development and illustrative outputs of the Community Integrated Assessment System (CIAS), a multi-institutional modular integrated assessment approach for modelling climate change.” This paper presents the development of CIAS, an integrated assessment model for climate change policy analysis, and its supporting software SoftIAM. CIAS combines various component modules to generate and compare avoided damages and mitigation costs of different climate policy scenarios.

Congratulations to all three teams for producing such excellent and valuable papers. These awards and those for 2009 will be presented at the Fifth Biennial meeting of the International Environmental Modelling and Software Society, with the theme “Modelling for Environment’s Sake” and held in Ottawa, Canada from July 5-8, 2010 (see

We are looking forward to assessing the 2009 Best Paper Awards, and hoping to see you at the iEMSs 2010 Congress in Ottawa next year.

Anthony J Jakeman (Editor-in-Chief ), Andrea E Rizzoli and Alexey A Voinov ( Editors)


Press release: The Environmental Software Directory is Now Free

The Environmental Software Directory is Now Free

Donley Technology’s popular Environmental Software Directory and Safety Software Directory are now available online at no cost.

March 24, 2010, Colonial Beach, VA — Looking for software to reduce your carbon footprint, to gain more control over your OSHA compliance programs, or to manage and analyze your monitoring data? Donley Technology wants to help. To celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Environmental Software Directory [and the 40th anniversary of Earth Day], they have decided to make their software directories free. 

At — the home of the Environmental Software Directory andSafety Software Directory — you’ll find information on about 3,000 commercial environmental, health and safety (EH&S) software products with links to the developers’ websites. Previously available only by subscription, the Directories are now available without charge.

Browse through 97 different topics, organized by:

  • Sustainability,
  • Safety,
  • Environmental Management,
  • Air,
  • Emergency Planning and Response,
  • Toxics and Chemicals,
  • Environmental Auditing, Tracking & Scheduling,
  • Geography and Geology,
  • Waste,
  • Environmental Impacts, and
  • Water.

Or search by product name, company name, or description.

“We invite you to take advantage of our 22 years of experience tracking and analyzing the industry,” said Elizabeth Donley, president of Donley Technology. “With support from many of the top EH&S software developers in the world, we are now able to provide the most comprehensive and up-to-date resource of its kind, at no cost to the user. and you’re likely to be surprised at the range of products available to meet just about any need you may have.” 

The Environmental Software Directory and Safety Software Directory are available at .

About Donley Technology: Donley Technology ( has been analyzing and reporting on the environmental, health and safety software industries and market since 1988. In addition to the Environmental Software Directory, Donley Technology publishes a series of special reports and an online newsletter designed to help those in need of EH&S software find the right product to meet their needs. These include the EH&S Management Information Systems Report, the MSDS Software Report, and the EH&S Software News, the only newsletter devoted exclusively to the EH&S software industry and market. Donley Technology’s publications and consulting services deliver objective, accurate information to EH&S and IT professionals who use, buy, develop, or market environmental, health, and safety software.

A Note to Editors: Graphics of the web site are available by request. Press release is available on the web at

Elizabeth Donley
Donley Technology
220 Garfield Avenue, PO Box 152
Colonial Beach, VA 22443-0152804-224-9427

EMS journal news

To promote our journal for Environmental Modeling and Software and improve support to our authors further, Elsevier has rolled out a unique initiative called *CiteAlert*. This will notify the authors when their research is cited in Elsevier-published journals. We expect this new service to have positive effects on usage and citation of the content of the journal.

Please find here an example of a CiteAlert message:

This option looks nice and very useful. Another good reason to publish your outstanding work in “Environmental Modeling and Software”!

Educational resources

A recently published book , edited by Toru Iiyoshi and M. S. Vijay Kumar

Opening Up Education: The Collective Advancement of Education through Open Technology, Open Content, and Open Knowledge”

The book contains essays by leaders in open education describe successes, challenges, and opportunities they have found in a range of open education initiatives.

More about the book and some sample chapters can be downloaded from here.

Interestingly, while it is presented as “sample chapters”, in fact you can download the whole book under the ‘Creative Commons” license. Very much in the spirit of the book itself!


An interesting discussion of copyright issues related to education can be found in this article:

Education: where copyrighters and publishers are the pirates

Online Simulation Modeling Course

An introduction to modeling, mostly focused on system dynamics. Modules on Predator-Prey Systems, Hydrologic Modeling, Modeling of Socio-Economic Systems. Mostly targeted for post-graduate level, but can be used in lower level classes as well.

(You will be asked to register, but it’s free)

More about the course concept.

A companion book that is written for this course and contains an updated and revised version of most of the modules is “Systems Science and Modeling for Ecological Economics“.

Modelling, Simulation and Optimization

The course provides a guide on modelling, simulation and optimisation that are fundamental to solving problems in a number of fields of science, technology and life. Students will learn to design, implement, simulate, and optimise a model of dynamic system.

More about the course.

The course is directly available only within Switzerland. More details and course slides are available upon request from Dr. Andrea E Rizzoli.

Integrated Enviromental Modelling and Evaluation

This is a MSc level course by Dr. Carlo Giupponi goes about modelling complex systems, fundamentals of ecology and ecosystem modelling. It aims to provide students with introductory knowledge of ecological systems, in order to allow understanding of the basic elements of the structure and functioning of ecological systems and their relationships with humans.

More about the course.

System Analysis and Integrated Modelling in Climate Change Research

Here the materials and presentations of the First winter school ‘Changes: global change science and policy’ are presented. The winter school organized by Dr. Carlo Giupponi covers topics about climate change, integrated modelling of natural and economic systems, policy development, decision making and modelling tools to tackle these issues.


EPANET is a computer program, developed by the U.S. EPA, which performs extended period (or quasi-steady) simulations of the hydraulic behaviour and water quality model of a water distribution system. A network is made up of pipes, nodes (pipe junctions), pumps, valves and tanks and reservoirs. EPANET calculates the flow through the lines, the head at the consumption nodes, the level at the tanks and reservoirs, and also the concentration of chemicals in the water distribution systems along large periods of time. Besides, it allows calculating the residing times and the origin of water among the different feeding points.

This web page proivdes the downloadable version of EPANET in Spanish together with manuals and examples (also in Spanish). The resource is provided by Dr. Petra Amparo Lopez-Jimenes (contact).


The EPA Storm Water Management Model (SWMM) is a dynamic rainfall-runoff simulation model used for single event or long-term (continuous) simulation of runoff quantity and quality from primarily urban areas. The runoff component of SWMM operates on a collection of subcatchment areas that receive precipitation and generate runoff and pollutant loads. The routing portion of SWMM transports this runoff through a system of pipes, channels, storage/treatment devices, pumps, and regulators. SWMM tracks the quantity and quality of runoff generated within each subcatchment, and the flow rate, flow depth, and quality of water in each pipe and channel during a simulation period comprised of multiple time steps.

This web page proivdes the downloadable version of SWMM in Spanish together with manuals and examples (also in Spanish). The resource is provided by Dr. Petra Amparo Lopez-Jimenes (contact).

Computational methods for water resource assessments – an exercise kit

This book editied by T. Kokkonen, A. J. Jakeman, H. Koivusalo and J. P. Norton presents a valuable teaching material that combines theory and exercises. The exercises are developed in a way that encourages readers to explore what happens ‘behind the scenes’ in environmental simulation models. Many of the exercises are also built on real data measured in the field. Most of the exercises are based on Microsoft Excel, which is the only proprietary software required for the exercises of this book and typically available to most students. More information about the book as well as the disctribution package itself is availabale here.

iEMSs Threads

iEMSs serves as an umbrella organization to support a number of “threads“, or “themes” that are organized into on-going community projects that evolve based on the open source principles. This means that we are encouraging and appreciating the participation in these projects, and we are trying to provide the infrastructure by developing web support and tools needed for these community projects.


If you have ideas for other “Threads” related to the iEMSs mission and objectives, please contact secretary (at) iemss (dot) org


So far, the following threads are started:


The topic of this thread is environmental modeling that uses resources or services that exist distributed in the Internet. The overall goal is to study methods and technologies of distributed environmental modeling.
We are especially interested in how to use existing standards or new standards that should be developed. This thread is a response to the iEMSs and OGC memorandum of understanding. The methods of work include development of demonstrator systems, preparation of scientific papers, organization and running of workshops and sessions in conferences, and collaborative work. The thread is open for participation of interested researchers.

Contact: Ari Jolma and Kostas Karatzas 


The Community for Integrated Environmental Modeling (CIEM) or the IM4E (Integrated Modeling for the Environment) has been started as an effort to facilitate discussions and development of software tools and standards for integrated modeling.

Currently it is functioning as a Google Group, where you can join if interested. 


Here we collect links to educatonal resources that can help prepare courses, presentations, etc. We also intend to use this repository to present the materials that will be published in the new Journal rubric on “Teaching and Learning Tools/Software”.



Overall goals:
– Initiate and maintain a discussion process about feedbacks in socio-environmental systems
– Initiate, plan & publish papers

Current objectives:
1) Develop a common language and an analytical framework to study feedback mechanisms and their implementation in models / modelling frameworks.
2) Review and analyse existing approaches, identify state of the art and research needs.
3) Present (best practice) examples for technical implementation in broadly used simulation methods (ABM, CA, GA, ODE), identify and discuss advantages, shortcomings and research needs.

Publish results of 1 – 3 in various steps (currently 2 papers planned)

Founding members (alphabetical):
Dalgaard Tommy (
Jakoby Oliver (
Lautenbach Sven (
Le Bao (
Otero Viviana (
Priess Jörg (initiator) (
Schwarz Nina (
Seidl Roman (
vanDelden Hedwig (



The ecosystem services concept enables development of policies that integrate social, economic, and ecological perspectives. Integrated environmental models are prone to support this concept as those can integrate several ecological functions, support the analysis of trade-offs and have been developed to a state where stakeholders can be involved and management solution can be derived.

How can environmental modelling support the implementation of the ecosystem services concept for environmental management? Towards appropriate methods for investigation, assessment, and implementation of ecosystem services in environmental management.

Topics of the thread

  • Model based quantifying ecosystem services
  • Use of ecosystem service modelling in regional case studies for environmental management
  • Who is using it where? Examples for the implementation of the ecosystem services concept in environmental management (under stakeholder involvement)

Thus in this thread we seek for discussions on regional studies and model development, that support a biophysical founded assessment of ecosystem services studies. Thus we seek for interdisciplinary examples by focussing on abiotic (water provisioning, regulating, soil protection) as well biotic processes (provisioning services, crop production, pollination, biocontrol). We welcome projects that performance those studies with modelling approaches on different levels of complexity. Second, we seek for investigations that specifically analyze trade-offs and off site effects. Thirdly, we appreciate to see how these results fed into a stakeholder process (for instance using multi criteria analysis and weighting of ecosystem services for assessment). We expect to get excellent examples of these issues to stimulate consistency and creativity of future ESS studies.

Organisers:Ralf Seppelt, UFZ, Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research, Leipzig, Germany
Martin Volk, UFZ, Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research, Leipzig, Germany
Ann van Griensven, UNESCO-IHE, Delft, The Netherlands