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The Hutchinson Drought Index reflects agricultural droughts using only rainfall data
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The Hutchinson Drought Index

The Hutchinson Drought Index (or Drought Severity Index) is a climatic drought index 
that was designed to reflect agricultural droughts using only rainfall data.

This project includes an R package in the master branch and the documentation on the gh-pages branch.

The index was invented by Professor Mike Hutchinson at the ANU in 1992 and 
this project includes R codes written by Ivan Hanigan to describe the calculations 
and also to download data to play with.

Casual readers will probably want to go straight to Hutchinson's original report

Readers wishing to reproduce the data analysis can do so by running the 'go.r' script
(see the Specification.txt file for explanations of the structure of the code).

Copyright is the GNU General Public License version 2 WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY,
Ivan C Hanigan <> and Michael F Hutchinson.

Please cite the original 1992 paper as well as this web repository as:
1. Smith, D. I, Hutchinson, M. F, & McArthur, R. J. (1992) Climatic and
   Agricultural Drought: Payments and Policy. (Centre for Resource and Environmental
   Studies, Australian National University, Canberra, Australia).

2. Hanigan, IC. 2012. The Hutchinson Drought Index Algorithm [Computer Software].

Financial support was provided by Professor Tony McMichael's 
"Australia Fellowship" from the the National Health and Medical Research Council, via the 
National Centre for Epidemiology and Population Health, Australian National University.  

The citations for the datasets used in this demonstration are:
1. Bureau of Meteorology High Quality Monthly precipitation data 
   downloaded on 2012-01-09 
2. Australian Bureau of Statistics Statistical Divisions 2006 
   downloaded on 2012-01-09 

Ivan Hanigan
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