This paper presents a method for appropriate coupling of deterministic and statistical models. In the decision-support system for the Elbe river, a conceptual rainfall-runoff model is used to obtain the discharge statistics and corresponding average number of flood days, which is a key input variable for a rule-based model for floodplain vegetation. The required quality of the discharge time series cannot be determined by a sensitivity analysis because a deterministic model is linked to a statistical model. To solve the problem, artificial discharge time series are generated that mimic the hypothetical output of rainfall-runoff models of different accuracy. The results indicate that a feasible calibration of the rainfall-runoff model is sufficient to obtain consistency with the vegetation model in view of its sensitivity to changes in the number of flood days in the floodplains.
- Decision-support system - River-basin management - Appropriate modelling - Model accuracy - Elbe - Floodplain vegetation model - Rainfall-runoff model