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Roy, A.H., A.L. Mayer, W.D. Shuster, H.W. Thurston, N.T. Hoagland, M.P. Clagett, P.K. Parikh, and M.A. Taylor. 2005. A multidisciplinary approach to stormwater management at the watershed scale. Proceedings of the 10th International Conference on Urban Drainage, August 21-26, 2005, Copenhagen, Denmark.


Stormwater runoff from extensive impervious surfaces in urban and suburban areas has led to human safety risks and stream ecosystem impairment, triggering an interest in watershed-scale retrofit stormwater management. Such stormwater management is of multidisciplinary relevance, posing legal, social, economic, hydrologic, and ecological challenges and constraints. A multidisciplinary approach to stormwater management is being tested in the Shepherd Creek watershed, a 20 km^2 residential and forested watershed in Cincinnati, OH (USA). An assessment of the total impervious area (TIA) revealed that a majority (50–72%) of TIA in sub-watersheds is in rooftops and driveways, so we decided to use parcel-level best management practices (BMPs) in the form of rain barrels and rain gardens to mitigate stormwater runoff. To abide by laws concerning stormwater, a voluntary economic auction approach will be used to distribute BMPs and evaluate landowners’ willingness-to-accept BMPs on their property in exchange for financial compensation. The hydrologic and ecologic responses to retrofit stormwater BMPs will be tested using a before-after-control-impact design, where the “impact” is the installation of BMPs. This research suggests a policy prescription for retrofit management of stormwater quantity that is, if not ideal in one discipline, at least sound in all disciplines.


Current Staff

Federal Staff: 3

Masters Students: 5

Phd Students: 11

Post Docs: 2

University Staff: 1

5 Year Summary

Students graduated: 69

Scientific Publications: 35

Presentations: 148



August 2005


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Unit Authors

Massachusetts Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit Cooperators

  1. Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife
  2. Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries
  3. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
  4. U.S. Geological Survey
  5. University of Massachusetts
  6. Wildlife Management Institute