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Keywords:

  • Economic modeling;
  • policy analysis;
  • water resources;
  • hydroeconomic models;
  • integrated models;
  • water value;
  • water demand;
  • water supply;
  • benefit-cost

Abstract Over the last 25 years, economic water policy models have evolved in concept, theoretical and technical methods, scope and application to address a host of water demand, supply, and management policy questions. There have been a number of theoretical and empirical advances over this period, particularly related to estimation of nonmarket, public good water-related values involving different methods of valuation. We discuss modeling advances including modeling multiple, competing demands, types of incentives and technologies and behavioral responses, incorporation of groundwater and other supply alternatives, integration of institutional factors, and increasing attention to system-wide impacts. The largest changes in hydroeconomic policy models have been the integration of the individual demand and supply components, inclusion of environmental values, incorporation of governance and institutional conditions (laws, regulations and policies), and expansion to river basin and even interposing scales of analysis. Important areas of future hydroeconomic model advances will be the use of genetic and neurological based algorithms for solving dynamic, stochastic problems, reconstruction of hydrological and economic relationships for remotely sensed data, and the expansion of models to understand and address transboundary water resource economic, hydrologic, environmental and institutional policy, and interdependencies.