PhD Theses

Thesis: Hydrological drought, Characterisation and representation in large-scale models At the start of this research project, multi-model studies at the global scale for hydrological drought were missing both for the historic and future climate. To understand the space-time development of large-scale hydrological drought events and the relations between different types of drought, more research considering multiple models, was needed. Increased knowledge can lead to improved drought projections and can be used to safeguard global water availability in the future. The main objective of this research was to investigate the space-time development of large-scale hydrological drought for historic and future drought events through a multi-model analysis. This research has partly been financially supported by the EU-FP6 Project WATCH and by the EU-FP7 Project DROUGHT-R&SPI.
Marjolein van Huijgevoort, Wageningen University, Friday 23 May 2014
On the propagation of drought - How climate and catchment characteristics influence hydrological drought development and recovery PhD thesis. Drought does not only occur in Africa, but also in wet climates where a lack of water compared to normal conditions also causes problems. Therefore, drought is defined as a below-normal water availability. I studied the development of hydrological drought (in groundwater and/or river discharge) in five study areas and on the global scale using data and models. Hydrological drought is often caused by a prolonged lack of rain. However, there are more causes, for example a long period of frost, resulting in snow instead of rain and no infiltration to the groundwater. Another severe drought is caused by the combination of these processes: a lack of rain in summer followed by frost in winter. I made a hydrological drought classification, which can be used by water managers to focus on the most frequent or most severe drought type. Some hydrological drought types were found to have an amplifying effect, especially in cold climates.
Van Loon, A.F., Friday 26 April 2013

Project objectives

  • Drought as a natural hazard, incl. climate drivers, drought generating processes and occurrences
  • Environmental and socio-economic impacts
  • Vulnerabilities, risks and policy responses, incl. the further development of drought management plans in support of EU and other international policies