University of Minnesota
University of Minnesota

Social media such as Facebook and Twitter, as well as blogs and more traditional news organizations play an important role in the flooding information cycle. Starting with direct observations of the floods, as time goes by these give way to reflection, introspection and planning for the future. The human voice is critical here in understanding past decisions, present circumstances, and in strong decision-making for the future. Be sure to visit the Flood Forum’s Academic, Scientific and Governmental Organizations and Resources or return to the Flood Forum for more information!

Send us a note at to make suggestions for other places we should look, media
to track, and stories to tell!


Clastic Detritus by Brian Romans

Brian Romans is a research geologist and a talented science communicator. Follow @clasticdetritus on Twitter. Flooding Creates Floodplains, May 3, 2011

Riparian Rap

The New York Times falls down on this flood, May 16, 2011

Bigger, stronger levees are not the answer, May 15, 2011

Wader-clad teevee clowns cover snakes, May 11, 2011

Birds Point Flood Coverage, Blowing a Fuse, May 9, 2011

Giving and Taking at BirdsPoint. Levees for Libertarians?, May 5, 2011

Floodways are for Floods, May 4, 2011

Birds Point myths, and shame on the New York Times, May 3, 2011

Blowing up Birds Point;Interview With John Remo, May 2, 2011

Blowing up Birds Point, May 1, 2011

Offering a scientific view, and informed analysis of river geomorphology and the business, politics, and science of river ecosystem conservation. Follow @gravelbar on Twitter for timely updates.

Mark Gorman is a policyanalyst at the NE-MW Institute where he provides thoughtful research and analysis to Mississippi River basin stakeholders. See @NEMWIUpperMiss onTwitter for more information.

Flood Insurance Reform Act Passed Out of House Committee, May 13, 2011

Mississippi River Basin Flood Update; A Situation Ripe for Policy Reconsideration, May 11, 2011

A Slow Moving Disaster: Mississippi Flooding, May 5, 2011

Water Matters

This blog post, from the Columbia Water Center, speaks eloquently of the frequency of 100-year floods, climatic cycles, and implications for the future. Follow @columbiawater on Twitter for more information.

“You are Misinformed”–Planning for Flood Regime Change, April 22, 2011

How Floods Work

A return to the fundamentals. This is a great resource and reminder of the factors that go into creating a flood, and how human intervention does (or doesn’t) help.

Bridge Number 9

Lisa Peters is recording the spring thaw and the swelling Mississippi River at St. Anthony Falls in Minneapolis. Starting with the falls looking almost serene, the photos illustrate the rapid rise of the river.

High Water Watch Second Crest April 12, 2011

High Water Watch #3 April 1, 2011

High Water Watch #2 March 27, 2011

High Water Watch March 17, 2011

City of Sound

From Dan Hill’s eloquent blog, this is a detailed description of his own experiences with the devastating floods in Australia earlier this year. He talks about the immediate response to the floods from the perspective of a self-described designer and urbanist.

Flood January 13, 2011

Digital Media

River Atlas

River Life’s own River Atlas is a series of Google Earth maps about rivers, people, and projects. Note in particular the River Floods collection that starts to coalesce the different kinds of information we use to record and remember floods.


Become a fan of River Life (RiverLifeUMN) for timely flood updates, thought provoking commentary and to join a network of river people and organizations! Join the conversation! Tell us your river news, ask us your river questions, or just stay up to date on important river issues.


Follow @RiverLifeUMN for daily tweets on river and flooding issues, news, and projects! Search for #mnflood or #floods2011 or keep track of our tweets and retweets at @RiverLifeUMN. During the spring flooding season we’re crowdsourcing flood news, resources, and pictures and Our Making the Mississippi class has been enthusiastically
posting their own materials and finds. Join us by mentioning @RiverLifeUMNin your own river and flooding tweets!

Star Tribune Infographics

Flood and Levee Strategies Sandbagging 101

MPR News and Flood Season 2011

Headlines, special features, and multimedia coverage of the Minnesota spring floods.

MPR News Maps

This is an at-a-glance view of flood gauge readings from the Twin Cities and surrounding areas.

Minnesota Floods ’11 Blog from MPR News

Frequently updated, this blog has a rich collection of the latest flood news, photos, updates and impacts.

River Life’s Blog

River Talk

See also River Floods @River Talk

Flood Update: Crest Passes Memphis, focus now on Morganza Spillway May 11, 2011

Where to Start with Updated Flood Coverage? May 9, 2011

Multiple Platforms for Flood Coverage May 6, 2011

National, International Flood Coverage May 5, 2011

2011 Flood Season Continues to Make News, Cause Worries May 5, 2011

As Floods Continue in South, Conflict Sharpens April 26, 2011

Week in Review: Floods April 2, 2011

Using Up More of my 15 Minutes March 29, 2011

Introducing River Life’s Flood Forum March 25, 2011

The 1965 Mississippi River Flood: YouTube edition March 16, 2011

The River’s Gonna Rise… March 15, 2011

In the Face of Recurring Floods, Iowans Expand Their Vision March 3, 2011

Flood Forecast: Likely February 21, 2011

Do Cities “Really” Need to be Connected to Their Rivers? January 5, 2011

Floods in St. Paul raise the issue “What’s the ‘floodplain?'” March 31,2010

Great Feeds

Follow all of these Twitter feeds and more by following River Life’s, @RiverLifeUMN, FloodCoverage 2011 public list on Twitter.


Matthew Garcia is a dad, scientist, hydrologist, meteorologist, analyst and much more. His critical eye and keen understanding of the issues makes him a valuable contributor to the greater conversation about the floods and water in general.


Steve Gough, also the author of Riparian Rap, offers insightful river science and informed analysis.


Brian Romans, out of Berkeley, California, is a research geologist and science blogger. Find his blog at Clastic Detritus.


Out of Atlanta, Georgia, this is the official feed of The Weather Channel and offers
timely updates on weather, flooding as well as longer range analysis and reporting.


The feed of the Columbia Water Center out of the Earth Institute in New York, New York. Apart from mobilizing sciences, education, and public policy to reduce water scarcity around the world, the feed also offers insightful analysis of water crises, including floods and other current events. Follow their blog, Water Matters, for more in-depth analysis.


Anne Jefferson, a watershed hydrologist at UNC Charlotte, posts about water, geology, geology, geomorphology, climate and science careers.


Mark Gorman is a policy analyst at the NE-MW Institute where he provides thoughtful research and analysis to Mississippi River basin stakeholders. See his Northeast-Midwest Institute’s Mississippi River Basin Blog for more information.


Out of Washington, D.C., American Rivers fights to protect and restore rivers in the U.S. so that communities can thrive in the face of climate change. Their commentary on the infrastructure of flooding helps illustrate how people and cities live with and within river systems.


Michael Campana is self-described water wonk, hydrologist, professor, and hydrophilanthropist. His coverage of the floods is valuable and is in context with a greater appreciation of water and water issues.


Out of Memphis, Tennessee, this feed actively engages the conversation of flood news and commentary on Twitter.


The official feed of the US Army Corps of Engineers in New Orleans, this feed offers timely updates on conditions, plans, and information from Flood Fight 2011 in the New Orleans District, including in particular the Morganza Spillway and New Orleans.

Contact Us!
Send us a note at to make suggestions for other places we should look, media to track, and stories to tell!
River Life in Video
Come Along for a Water Walk with Kare11 and River Life, and see Gifts at Work: The Mississippi River by the University of Minnesota Foundation
Open Rivers: Rethinking the Mississippi
A joint project of River Life, the Institute for Advanced Study, and the University of Minnesota Libraries, Open Rivers is an interdisciplinary online journal that recognizes the Mississippi River as a space for timely and critical conversations about people, community, water, and place.