At the state and local level, NIDIS has developed regional DEWS, where local networks of researchers, resource managers, policymakers, the private sector, academics, and other stakeholders share information and actions to help their communities cope with drought. A DEWS coordinates this network of key regional partners so that decision makers and citizens can systematically approach drought monitoring and forecasting integration when planning and preparing for drought. These regional DEWS respond to particular geographic and hydrologic circumstances, as well as specific stakeholder needs in their respective region.
A regional DEWS is not simply the dissemination of a forecast. It is an integrated information system that is comprised of multiple information sets, such as forecasting, monitoring, research, capacity-building, and public outreach. A DEWS encourages innovation by integrating new, locally relevant drought information, and supports the introduction of new technologiesthat detect and communicate drought risks and warnings.