Elements of Physical Hydrology



The problem with writing an introductory textbook with broad appeal in the field of hydrology is that the essential subject has been harvested by so many disciplines that a textbook written for one audience gets little traction in another. For example, engineering hydrology textbooks traditionally emphasize methods and techniques that satisfy the requirements of engineering design. With more or less emphasis, the text usually includes a survey of the mathematics, solutions, empirical prescriptions, and “tools,” while context and meaning of the equations receive a good deal less emphasis.

On the other hand, textbooks written from the perspective of environmental science provide a strong dose of concept by dealing with processes in an expository fashion. However, there is a tendency toward dialogue rather than diagnosis and the learner may not get a good sense of the analysis required for solving problems.