Drought indicators and triggers

Anne C. Steinemann, Michael J. Hayes, Luiz F.N. Cavalcanti

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

84 Scopus citations


Drought indicators are variables that describe the magnitude, duration, severity, and spatial extent of drought. Typical indicators are based on meteorological and hydrological variables, such as precipitation, streamflows, soil moisture, reservoir storage, and groundwater levels. Several indicators can be synthesized into a single indicator on a quantitative scale, often called a drought index. Although drought indices can provide ease of implementation, the scientific and operational meaning of an index value may raise questions, such as how each indicator is combined and weighted in the index and how an arbitrary index value relates to geophysical and statistical characteristics of drought.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationDrought and Water Crises
Subtitle of host publicationScience, Technology, and Management Issues
PublisherCRC Press
Number of pages22
ISBN (Electronic)9781420028386
ISBN (Print)9780824727710
StatePublished - Jan 1 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Engineering(all)
  • Environmental Science(all)


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