SWAT Literature Database for Peer-Reviewed Journal Articles

Title:A recommended calibration and validation strategy for hydrologic and water quality models 
Authors:Daggupati, P., N. Pai, S. Ale, K.R. Douglas-Mankin, R.W. Zeckoski, J. Jeong, P.B. Parajuli, D. Saraswat and M.A. Youssef 
Journal:Transactions of the ASABE 
Article ID: 
URL (non-DOI journals): 
Broad Application Category:review/history 
Primary Application Category:calibration, sensitivity, and/or uncertainty analysis 
Secondary Application Category:none 
Watershed Description:None 
Calibration Summary: 
Validation Summary: 
General Comments:This study is part of a set of 10 articles published as a special issue in Transactions ASABE, issue 58(6). The overall special issue is focused on a broad range of ecohydrological model calibration and validation topics. The articles are not necessarily focused on SWAT but the topics are extremely relevant for the SWAT user community so all 10 articles have been included in the SWAT Literature Database. 
Abstract:Hydrologic and water quality (H/WQ) models are widely used to support site-specific environmental assessment, design, planning, and decision making. Calibration and validation (C/V) are fundamental processes used to demonstrate that an H/WQ model can produce suitable results in a particular application. However, the lack of comprehensive guidelines has led to the use of ad hoc, inconsistent, and incomplete C/V processes, which have made it difficult to interpret the myriad of published modeling studies, reduced the utility of many modeling applications, and slowed the advancement of H/WQ modeling. The objective of this article is to provide a generalized structure and process to assist modelers in developing a C/V strategy for H/WQ modeling applications. These best practice recommendations were developed based on an expansive review of the modeling literature, including a special collection of articles on H/WQ model calibration, validation, and use, as well as extensive discussion and debate among the authors. The model C/V recommendations include careful consideration, execution, and documentation of the following elements: (1) goals of model use, (2) data and parameters used in C/V, and (3) model C/V processes. Considerations in element 3 include the warm-up period, C/V strategy complexity, C/V process staging, spatiotemporal allocation of C/V comparison data, manual vs. automatic C/V, and additional diagnostics. Notable examples from the literature are provided for each strategy element. The comprehensive C/V strategy described herein will allow for better interpretation of future modeling studies, improved utility of modeling applications, and more systematic advancement of H/WQ models. 
Keywords:Calibration, Guidelines, Hydrologic modeling, Strategy, Validation