Post audit of groundwater model predictions under changing conditions

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Post audits of hydrological or groundwater models are the last part of the modelling protocol, where the original model predictions are tested using new data obtained after a certain period. The evaluation of model predictions and associated predictive uncertainty was performed by comparing an original hydrological model, a model with post audited geology, and a model with post audited geology and calibrated against new types of observation data. The post audit showed original model predictions close to what was observed (in terms of abstracted volumes necessary to lower a shallow groundwater table). In contrast to the robust original model predictions, the original model underestimated the predictive uncertainty compared to the assessments of uncertainty using the new and updated post audit model. To ensure a robust model evaluation, we propose a four-step post audit protocol, including (1) testing the validity of the original model predictions with new data, (2) estimating the predictive uncertainty of the original model, (3) producing a new post audit model(s) based on revising the conceptual model and calibration, and (4) assessing the predictive uncertainty of the new post audit models. The work presented here was motivated by the lack of studies that, after a certain time, have re-evaluated model predictions (post audit) with new data.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1144
Number of pages22
JournalWater (Switzerland)
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2023


  • groundwater
  • groundwater model
  • hydrological model
  • model uncertainty
  • post audit
  • predictive uncertainty
  • protocol

Programme Area

  • Programme Area 2: Water Resources


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