Dealing with landscape heterogeneity in watershed hydrology: A review of recent progress toward new hydrological theory

Peter A. Troch, Gustavo A. Carrillo, Ingo Heidbüchel, Seshadri Rajagopal, Matt Switanek, Till H.M. Volkmann, Mary Yaeger

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

64 Scopus citations

Abstract

Predictions of hydrologic system response to natural and anthropogenic forcing are highly uncertain due to the heterogeneity of the land surface and subsurface. Landscape heterogeneity results in spatiotemporal variability of hydrological states and fluxes, scale-dependent flow and transport properties, and incomplete process understanding. Recent community activities, such as Prediction in Ungauged Basins of International Association of Hydrological Sciences, have recognized the impasse current catchment hydrology is facing and have called for a focused research agenda toward new hydrological theory at the watershed scale. This new hydrological theory should recognize the dominant control of landscape heterogeneity on hydrological processes, should explore novel ways to account for its effect at the watershed scale, and should build on an interdisciplinary understanding of how feedback mechanisms between hydrology, biogeochemistry, pedology, geomorphology, and ecology affect catchment evolution and functioning.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)375-392
Number of pages18
JournalGeography Compass
Volume3
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 16 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Water Science and Technology
  • Social Sciences(all)
  • Earth-Surface Processes
  • Computers in Earth Sciences
  • Atmospheric Science

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