Journal of Arid Land

, Volume 10, Issue 2, pp 169–182 | Cite as

Model based decision support system for land use changes and socio-economic assessments

  • Yang Yu
  • Xi Chen
  • Philipp Huttner
  • Marie Hinnenthal
  • Andreas Brieden
  • Lingxiao Sun
  • Markus Disse


Hydrological models are often linked with other models in cognate sciences to understand the interactions among climate, earth, water, ecosystem, and human society. This paper presents the development and implementation of a decision support system (DSS) that links the outputs of hydrological models with real-time decision making on social-economic assessments and land use management. Discharge and glacier geometry changes were simulated with hydrological model, water availability in semiarid environments. Irrigation and ecological water were simulated by a new commercial software MIKE HYDRO. Groundwater was simulated by MODFLOW. All the outputs of theses hydrological models were taken as inputs into the DSS in three types of links: regression equations, stationary data inputs, or dynamic data inputs as the models running parallel in the simulation periods. The DSS integrates the hydrological data, geographic data, social and economic statistical data, and establishes the relationships with equations, conditional statements and fuzzy logics. The programming is realized in C++. The DSS has four remarkable features: (1) editable land use maps to assist decision-making; (2) conjunctive use of surface and groundwater resources; (3) interactions among water, earth, ecosystem, and humans; and (4) links with hydrological models. The overall goal of the DSS is to combine the outputs of scientific models, knowledge of experts, and perspectives of stakeholders, into a computer-based system, which allows sustainability impact assessment within regional planning; and to understand ecosystem services and integrate them into land and water management.


decision support system hydrological modeling ecosystem services land management socio-economic indicator Tarim River Basin 


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This study was supported by German-Sino bilateral collaboration research project SuMaRiO funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research. We are grateful to the support of NSFC-UNEP Project (41361140361): Ecological Responses to Climatic Change and Land-cover Change in Arid and Semiarid Central Asia during the Past 500 Years. This work is the outcome of the interdisciplinary cooperation research among 11 German and 9 Chinese universities and research institutes. Many further researches and projects can learn experience from the algorithm and methodologies of the DSS, which is applicable to other regions. The DSS is free available on request. Comments and further discussions are welcome.


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Copyright information

© Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography, the Chinese Academy of Sciences and Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yang Yu
    • 1
  • Xi Chen
    • 1
  • Philipp Huttner
    • 2
  • Marie Hinnenthal
    • 3
  • Andreas Brieden
    • 3
  • Lingxiao Sun
    • 1
  • Markus Disse
    • 2
  1. 1.Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and GeographyChinese Academy of SciencesUrumqiChina
  2. 2.Chair of Hydrology and River Basin ManagementTechnical University of MunichMunichGermany
  3. 3.Chair of Statistics and Risk ManagementUniversitaet der Bundeswehr MuenchenNeubibergGermany

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