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River Science at the U.S. Geological Survey
is important to this effort, as is partnering and cooperation with other federal and local agencies, since many groups collect and archive data relevant to river science.
Archiving, disseminating, and managing integrated datasets for river science is a challenging problem. However, advances in information technologies are transforming science by making complex data archives easier to access and analyze. An informatics component is needed to develop a common data model for efficiently archiving and distributing datasets and metadata. Conceptualizing such a data model, and putting it into practice, will require an ongoing, long-term effort on the part of the USGS as an institution, as well as its individual disciplines. Coordination and partnership with other federal agencies and nonfederal partners is important. The coordination necessary to achieve the goal of a common data model for river science may serve to stimulate integration between fragmented river science activities across the federal agencies, the nongovernmental sector, and within the USGS, and provide a basis for a coordinated interdisciplinary management approach, as considered in the following chapter.