Special Issue "Application of the Systems Approach to the Management of Complex Water Systems"

A special issue of Water (ISSN 2073-4441). This special issue belongs to the section "Water Resources Management and Governance".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 March 2020.

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Slobodan P. Simonovic Website E-Mail
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering University of Western Ontario London, ON N6A 5B9, Canada
Interests: water management; systems analysis; complexity; risk; resilience; hydrology

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

During the past five decades we have witnessed a tremendous evolution in water resource systems management. Three of the characteristics of this evolution should be noted in particular.

First, the application of the systems approach to complex water management problems has been established as one of the most important advances in the field of water resource management. A primary emphasis of systems analysis in water resource management is on providing an improved basis for decision-making. A large number of analytical, computer-based tools, from simulation and optimization to multi-objective analysis, are available for formulating, analyzing and solving water resource planning, design and operational problems.

Second, the past five decades have brought a remarkable transformation of attitude in the water resource management community towards environmental concerns, and action to address these concerns. Water, together with land and air, is under significant pressure from a growing population, changing climate and the associated needs for food production and rapid urbanization.

Third, applying the principles of sustainability to water resource decision-making requires major changes in the objectives on which decisions are based, and an understanding of the complicated inter-relationships between existing ecological, economic and social factors. To make decisions designed to produce sustainable water resources also calls for a change in procedural policies and implementation.

Today, more than ever, we need appropriate tools that can assist in dealing with the difficulties introduced by the increase in the complexity of water resource problems, consideration of environmental impacts and the introduction of principles of sustainability. The systems approach is one such tool. This Special Issue offers an opportunity to review numerous applications of the systems approach to water resource management and draw lessons from worldwide experience relevant to the solution of future water problems.

Prof. Dr. Slobodan P. Simonovic
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Water is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • Water resource management
  • Systems analysis
  • Sustainability
  • Complexity
  • Climate change
  • Uncertainty
  • Risk
  • Resilience
  • Decision support

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Open AccessArticle
System Dynamics Approach for Assessing the Behaviour of the Lim Reservoir System (Serbia) under Changing Climate Conditions
Water 2019, 11(8), 1620; https://doi.org/10.3390/w11081620 - 06 Aug 2019
Investigating the impact of climate change on the management of a complex multipurpose water system is a critical issue. The presented study focuses on different steps of the climate change impact analysis process: (i) Use of three regional climate models (RCMs), (ii) use [...] Read more.
Investigating the impact of climate change on the management of a complex multipurpose water system is a critical issue. The presented study focuses on different steps of the climate change impact analysis process: (i) Use of three regional climate models (RCMs), (ii) use of four bias correction methods (BCMs), (iii) use of three concentration scenarios (CSs), (iv) use of two model averaging procedures, (v) use of the hydrological model and (vi) use of the system dynamics simulation model (SDSM). The analyses are performed for a future period, from 2006 to 2055 and the reference period, from 1971 to 2000. As a case study area, the Lim water system in Serbia (southeast Europe) is used. The Lim river system consists of four hydraulically connected reservoirs (Uvac, Kokin Brod, Radojnja, Potpec) with a primary purpose of hydropower generation. The results of the climate change impact analyses indicate change in the future hydropower generation at the annual level from −3.5% to +17.9%. The change has a seasonal variation with an increase for the winter season up to +20.3% and decrease for the summer season up to −33.6%. Furthermore, the study analyzes the uncertainty in the SDSM outputs introduced by different steps of the modelling process. The most dominant source of uncertainty in power production is the choice of BCMs (54%), followed by the selection of RCMs (41%). The least significant source of uncertainty is the choice of CSs (6%). The uncertainty in the inflows and outflows is equally dominated by the choice of BCM (49%) and RCM (45%). Full article
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Planned Papers

The below list represents only planned manuscripts. Some of these manuscripts have not been received by the Editorial Office yet. Papers submitted to MDPI journals are subject to peer-review.

Planned paper from Dr. Leif Birger Lillehammer, Senior Advisor/Specialist at Multiconsult, Oslo Area, Norway

Planned paper from Prof. Subhankar Karmakar, Interdisciplinary Program in Climate Studies, Indian Institute of Technology Bombay, Mumbai, India

Planned paper from Dr. Nesa Ilich, Optimal Solutions Ltd., Calgary, AB, Canada

Planned paper from Dr. Niru Nirupama, York University, Toronto, Canada

Planned paper from Alexander Buber, Department of Melioration and Water Management Complex, Moscow, Russian

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