Research at the nexus of climate, humans, and water
Research at the nexus of climate, humans, and water

About

  • CLIMATE, WATER, AND FOOD NEXUS

    Quantifying the interplay between climate, water resources, and agricultural production through modeling and historical data analysis.

  • FLOOD PROCESSES AND SOCIETAL IMPACTS

    Using large datasets to understand the hydrologic processes that lead to floods and the relationship between flood magnitude and economic damages.

  • HUMAN IMPACTS ON HYDROLOGIC PROCESSES

    Humans modify the land surface in myriad ways; we seek to understand if there are characteristic changes in surface hydrologic regimes due to human impacts.


Broadly, our research sits at the intersection of climate, water resources, and human activities. We study…

… how climate, specifically shocks like heat waves or slowly evolving changes due to anthropogenic climate change, impact hydrologic processes, particularly flooding, and the water-food nexus.

… how human water use, infrastructure, and land change impact hydrologic processes.

… trade-offs between agricultural yield gains due to irrigation and water stress.

We answer these questions with computational approaches that blend physics-based and statistical models with large historical datasets to test hypotheses and analyze the response of the hydrologic system to climate and anthropogenic perturbations.


  • PHYSICALLY-BASED MODELS

    The VIC hydrologic model is used (and modified) to simulate the historical and future surface hydrology. Computationally efficient calibration techniques are often developed based on the model application. Recent work has utilized MODFLOW-OWHM.

  • BIG DATA APPROACHES / STATISTICAL MODELS

    The past decade has seen an explosion in hydrologically-relevant datasets over the continental US, allowing us to revisit research questions that we previously could not answer. We are exploring using big data techniques to answer them.