I am putting together a paper regarding a fish habitat study. Habitat was modeled based on river hydraulics using a program called River2D for a wide set of environmental conditions. The models were calibrated using one set of actual observations of the study site hydraulics.

Essentially, we adjusted the model until the results we got when we ran it using the conditions under which the actual observations were made closely matched the actual observations.

In the paper my coauthors and I are putting together, we want to present the fact that we calibrated our models to within +/- 1% of a known set of conditions. We cannot reach consensus on whether this should be presented in the Methods sections as a comment on the robustness of our calibrations, or in the Results section as it is the result of something.

I am interested to know what other researchers have done when presenting the results of model calibrations in publications.

Thanks in advance for any input.

1 Answer 1


IMHO It doesn't belong in your main results section, as it isn't the results of your study - simply an intermediate step similar to testing the correct functioning of a bit of lab equipment. Nevertheless, it may be a substantial achievement in its own right.

If you must stick to "method" and "results" sections, I'd add a "model validation" subsection to the Method one. You may want to refer to it in your conclusions as though it were a result, to highlight how trustworthy you believe the model to be.

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