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About the Consortium

The VALUABLES Consortium is a cooperative agreement between Resources for the Future (RFF) and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). We are based at RFF’s Washington, DC headquarters.

Created in 2016 with a $3.5 million award from NASA, we are working to quantify and communicate how the use of satellite information in decisions can improve outcomes for people and the environment. The consortium brings together economists and decision scientists, NASA scientists and remote sensing experts, and members of the wider Earth science community.

Our work is motivated by the science of the value of information (VOI), a microeconomic approach to determining what information is worth by assessing the difference in how people make a decision with and without this information.

Our efforts center around two types of activities: conducting case studies, known as impact assessments, and developing educational materials and activities designed to support the Earth science community in quantifying the societal value of its work.

Impact Assessments

To demonstrate the societal benefits provided by remotely-sensed information—and information from Earth-observing satellites in particular—we conduct rigorous case studies called impact assessments that quantify how the use of Earth observations improves outcomes for people and the environment across a range of application areas. These application areas include water quality, health and air quality, disaster response, and climate observation. Learn more.

Educational Tools and Resources

In addition to producing impact assessments, consortium researchers are developing a VOI framework the scientific community can use to design impact assessments for their applied research. This framework forms the basis of our tutorials, webinars, workshops, and digital media products. It structures our work to help Earth scientists better understand the terms, concepts, and methods they can use to develop rigorous impact assessments for specific satellite data applications. Explore tools and resources.