The Impact of Professional Judgement to Final Data Usability

Oral Presentation

Prepared by E. Strout, L. Bohannon
Retired (EcoChem, Inc.), 3506 Crystal Springs Dr. NE, Bainbridge Island, WA, 98110, United States

Contact Information:; 206-508-2125


Users of environmental data (stakeholders) may assume that USEPA validation guidance documents are 'cut-and-dried' in their approach to data qualification and actions taken due to non-conformance. In reality, the guidance documents allow the validation chemist to use professional judgement (PJ) for a large number of data quality issues. The geographic location, client base and approach of each validation organization impact the PJ decisions; this can have a significant impact on the qualifiers applied to the data. This lack of consistency and/or comparability between data validation firms, or chemists within the organization, results in data usability issues. This presentation will discuss several of the most important PJ decisions, the potential differences in the application of qualifiers, and the subsequent data usability inconsistencies.