I would like to share the meaning of some terms in the field of hydrology, climatology, water resources management, and environmental studies/engineering, and data science. They are important, but sometimes confusing and are listed alphabetically:




Conterminous/Contiguous United States: used for the 48 states. <reference> (posted on 12/21/2021)

Continental United States: U.S. land continuously stretching from the Atlantic to Pacific oceans plus the state of Alaska. <reference> (posted on 12/21/2021)


drought: A period of abnormally dry weather sufficiently long enough to cause a serious hydrological imbalance. <reference> (posted on 12/02/2021)

dry spell: A period of precipitation below a specified amount. <reference> (posted on 12/02/2021)



Flash drought: An unusually rapid onset drought event characterized by a multiweek period of accelerated intensification that culminates in impacts to one or more sectors (agricultural, hydrological, etc.). <reference> (posted on 03/17/2022)




Interdisciplinarity: concerns the transfer of methods from one discipline to another. Like multidisciplinarity, interdisciplinarity overflows disciplines, but its goal remains within the framework of disciplinary research. <reference> (posted on 12/02/2021)





Multidisciplinarity: involves in studying a research topic in not just one discipline but in serveral at the same time. Any topic will ultimately be enriched by the incorporation of the perspectives of several disciplines. The multidisciplinary approach overflows disciplinary boundaries but its goal remains limited to the framework of disciplinary research. <reference> (posted on 12/02/2021)






Runoff: That portion of precipitation or irrigation on an area which does not infiltrate or evaporate, but instead is discharged from the area. <reference> (posted on 12/02/2021)


Streamflow (a.k.a. river discharge/flow rate): the volumetric flux through rivers/stream channels per unit time. <reference> (posted on 12/02/2021)


Transdisciplinarity: concerns that which is at once between the disciplines, across the different disciplines, and beyond all disciplines. Its goal is the understanding of the present world, of which one of the imperatives is the unity of knowledge. <reference> (posted on 12/02/2021)