Water for Food series examines monitoring, modeling water

Nicolas van de Giesen
Nicolas van de Giesen

One of the major challenges of managing water resources is understanding how much water we actually have. Nicolas van de Giesen of the Technical University of Delft, the Netherlands, will examine this issue in his seminar “Monitoring and Modeling the Global Terrestrial Hydrological System: Making Every Drop Count by Counting Every Drop” at 3 p.m. Jan. 24 in the East Union's Cottonwood Room. The talk is part of the Daugherty Water for Food Institute Winter Seminar Series.

Since July 2004, van de Giesen has held the Van Kuffeler Chair of Water in the Water Resources Section of the Faculty of Civil Engineering and Geosciences at Technical University Delft. His main research interest is in the modeling of complex water systems and the development of science-based decision support systems. The interaction between water and their users is central to his work in research and education. He has served as chairman of the Delft Research Initiative Environment since April 2009.

His current research interests include distributed temperature sensing in water management issues; the development of planning tools for the siting, construction and management of groups of small reservoirs in Ghana and Burkina Faso, Zimbabwe, and Brazil; and the Trans-African Hydro-Meteorological Observatory, to provide a dense network of low-cost hydro-meteorological stations for sub-Saharan Africa using innovative sensors and information and communication technology.

From 1998 to 2004, van de Giesen was a senior scientist at the Center for Development Research at Bonn University where he was responsible for hydrological activities in multi-disciplinary research projects in developing countries. These projects emphasized the impact of land-use change on the water cycle, hydrological use of remote sensing and integration of hydrology in policy making. From 2000-2004 he was responsible for coordinating the interdisciplinary GLOWA Volta Project to support sustainable water resource management in the countries of the Volta Basin in West Africa.

He holds a doctorate from Cornell University, where his research is focused on developing wetlands in Rwanda. He received Master of Science and Bachelor of Science degrees from Wageningen University, the Netherlands.