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The scenario-based reservoir modelling method places a strong emphasis on the deterministic control of the model design, contrasting with strongly probabilistic approaches in which effort is focused on the ‘richness’ of a geostatistical algorithm to derive multiple stochastic realizations. Scenario-based approaches also differ from traditional ‘rationalist’ modelling, which often involves the construction of only a single, best-guess or base-case model. The advantage of scenario modelling is that there is no requirement to anchor on a preferred, base-case model, and it is argued here that selection of a base case is detrimental to achieving appropriately wide uncertainty ranges. Multiple-deterministic scenario modelling also carries the advantage of maintaining explicit dependency between model parameters and the ultimate model outcome, such as a development plan. The approach has been applied widely to new fields, where multiple deterministic reservoir simulations of a suite of static models can be easily handled. The approach has also been extended to mature fields, in which practical approaches to multiple-history matching are required. Mature field scenario modelling, in particular, illustrates the weaknesses of base-case modelling, and delivers a strong statement on the non-uniqueness of modelling in general. Current issues are the need to develop better methodologies for multiple-history matching, and for linking discrete, deterministic, scenario-based outcomes to probabilistic reporting. Experimental design methods offer a solution to the latter issue, and a simple, practical workflow for its application is described.

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