Models allow for standardized interpretation and efficient re-use of scientific insight. Quality of the models, and their software implementation has different meaning for scientists, management and end-users. This task works on a system for quality assurance and quality control for models to ensure scientific robustness, operational awareness and clear interpretation.
When applying models, and their software implementation, in policy briefs, decision support and scientific reports, the documentation, scientific considerations and analysis and concerns with regards to operational efficiency remain hidden. This tasks will develop a quality assurance and quality control system for models used within Wageningen research. This QA/QC system will encompass a quality standard for models, with the aims of (1) indicating risks for application, (2) suggesting improvements in models, and (3) providing a basis for maintaining quality when combining different models. Furthermore the QA/QC system will create awareness at management level for the needs to continuously invest in the maintenance and development of models, and focus on where to do so.
In 2020 we will start working with the quality standard in the context of different WR institutes. We will do so by asking model development teams to assess how well their model adheres to the quality standard through a self-assessment. For two models we will perform an audit on this quality.
Furthermore we will discuss structural uptake of QA/QC on models within the organizational structure at the different WR-institutes. For this uptake a WR-wide approach should be designed that can be tailored to institute specific circumstances. This structural uptake will provide insight to model developers, management and model users on the quality status, applicability, operation and investment needs for models.