Water Data Exchange (WaDE) Program
Transforming Western Water Planning, Management, and Policy by
Sharing States Water Data Since 2011
What We Do
The WaDE Program is committed to assisting WSWC member states in publicly sharing water rights, allocation, supply, and use data through a common streamlined and standardized service that enables regional analyses to inform water resources planning and policies.
WaDE Data System
Develop and grow the Water Data Exchange (WaDE) Program that streamlines access to water rights and water use data and build interoperable data connections with federal data services
Workshops and Webinars
Organize the Water Information Management Systems (WIMS) workshops and webinars as a forum for WSWC members to learn, share, and exchange ideas specific to water information and data management.
Publish reports, journal articles, and regional data analysis to better inform water resources planning and policymaking
How much water is there? What is its quality? How is it currently being used? Improving our water data infrastructure, quality, and availability is one of the country’s most pressing challenges, but it is one that will enable us to more sustainably manage our most precious resource. To address this challenge, the Western States Water Council (WSWC) aimed to formulate a strategy and to develop a framework for its member states to begin to share important water supply, water use, and water administration datasets with each other, with federal partners, and with the public, called the Water Data Exchange.
WaDE is governed by the WSWC’s Water Information and Data Subcommittee (WIDS), comprised of members within WSWC that have a strong interest in how data are used to make water resource management decisions. To address different facets of the WaDE effort, the WIDS subcommittee assisted in convening four workgroups: WIDS meets semi-annually to discuss the future direction of WaDE, and to plan Water Information Management Symposium (WIMS) topics and needs. WIMS meetings are intended to address the special needs of water information regarding data management, reporting, data-gathering, quality control, and data publication.
Principles-Based Data Sharing
Taking a principles-based approach, the Council has sought to articulate and put into action its vision for sharing water data. These principles include:
- Making transparency, openness, discoverability, and accessibility the default for public water data, while also ensuring the highest levels of security and privacy for stakeholders where needed.
- Whenever possible, sharing data using developed standards and machine-readable formats, including thoroughly documented metadata, will promote interoperability, regional analyses, and user flexibility. Follow us on GitHub
Since 2012, the Western States Water Council has been laying the foundation for an effective program. This includes the mundane tasks of surveying and outreach to data providers, procuring additional resources for states who needed assistance, forming partnership to oversee the funds and other governance, development of the WaDE code and application, extensive assistance for implementation with state partners, as well as ongoing maintenance and updates. It’s not glamorous work, but cumulatively it represents a tremendous step forward in not only the data-sharing and publishing practices within the states, but the in the way we value the information we have concerning our resources. We are starting to think of water data beyond its limited and specific mission, and beginning to see the limitless value of high-quality data shared in a way that is easily discoverable and accessible.
WaDE Program Updates
Meetings and Webinars
Reports and Publications
In June 2014, WSWC published a "Western State Water Program Capabilities Assessment Survey & Report," which was the culmination of extensive meetings, conversations, and written responses to a survey. The survey sought to understand how the States collect,...
I have always felt that the collaboration with WSWC was one of the best in my career. I also feel WaDE is one of the driving forces and catalyst for how USGS water use data has developed and expanded over the years.
The WaDE Program is part of the Western States Water Council. If you have questions, contact the Program Manager
Western States Water Council Office
682 East Vine Street, Suite 7
Murray, UT 84107-5501
WaDE Program Manager
Data Analyst / Hydroinformatics Specialist