Montanari began his research activity in 1993, by initially
studying prediction and real time forecasting of rainfall events.
In this respect he also worked at the detection of the possible
presence of non-stationarity in long rainfall records observed in
Italy, by also inspecting the effects that such non-stationarity
can induce in the evaluation of the design
the research activity was mainly devoted to techniques for the
simulation of synthetic hydrological data observed at fine
time-scale. These studies were conducted during two stays at the
Boston University, working with M.S. Taqqu. During his Ph.D., he
also made some experiments of practical application of a modified
version of the Streeter-Phelps water quality model to small Italian
In the recent
past he also made some studies aimed at identifying the optimal
coupling of rainfall-runoff models and stochastic models for
performing real-time flood forecasting.
research activity is carried out within the following main
rainfall-runoff models for flood estimation and
2) Analysis of
the effects of land-use change on flood and drought
of the environmental flow requirements downstream water withdrawals
in natural rivers.
4) Analysis of
the spatial distribution and spatial clustering of landslide events
at the basin scale.
analysis in hydrological modelling.
(1), Alberto Montanari has recently set up and made available on
the world wide web the code for the application of a spatially
distributed rainfall-runoff model that he developed in the latter
years. It is essentially a conceptual, grid based model that has
been applied within topic (2) in order to assess the effects on the
river flows of recent land-use changes that occurred in the
administrative district of the city of Bologna (Italy). Topic (3)
is nowadays becoming more and more popular in Italy, since local
administrations are imposing to respect the environmental flow
requirements downstream of relevant water withdrawals from natural
rivers. Alberto Montanari recently proposed a multi-criteria
approach for the estimation of the minimum environmental flow.
Topic (4) is being developed within a co-operation with the
University of Minnesota (prof. C. Paola), with the aim to
investigate the possible links between the spatial distribution of
hillslope failures and knickpoints positions in natural streams.
Topic (5) constitutes the main research interest of Alberto
Montanari in the current months. The activity so far developed has
resulted in the proposal of a stochastic approach for the
estimation of the probability distribution of the simulation error
of rainfall-runoff models. The proposed methodology has already
received citations by the international scientific literature.
Alberto Montanari is currently devoting his main research activity
to testing the performances of the uncertainty assessment method
known as Generalised Likelihood Uncertainty Estimator (GLUE). A
paper about these studies was recently published to the journal
Water Resources Research.