PI: Dr. Y. C. Ethan Yang

Dr. Y. C. Ethan Yang's research interests are water resources management, Water-Energy-Food Nexus, agent-based modeling, climate change risk assessment, transboundary water policy, and stormwater management. Dr. Yang has extensive experience in water resources system analysis in the Great Himalayan region from Central Asia to Southeastern Asia and the Sub-Saharan Africa region. Dr. Yang’s team has modeled several major basins around the world such as the Indus, Brahmaputra, Ayeyarwady, Mekong, Amu Darya, Niger, Colorado, and Columbia Basin. He is an author and co-author of more than 40 peer-reviewed journal papers and 50 conference papers. Dr. Yang is a regular reviewer for top-ranking journals in the water resources and he serves as an Associate Editor for the Journal of Water Resources Planning and Management – ASCE.


Water-Energy-Food Nexus

Hydropower-irrigation tradeoff; integrated system modeling

2005 - 2010

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Ph.D. in Civil & Environmental Engineering

Agent-based modeling

Coupled Natural-Human System; decentralized optimization

Climate change impact assessment

climate change uncertainty; impact mitigation and adaptation  

Stormwater Smart City

Internet-of-Thing-based green infrastructure; adaptive stormwater management 

2002 - 2004

National Taiwan University

M.S. in Bioenvironmental Systems Engineering

1998 - 2002

National Taiwan University

B.S. in Geography



  • NSF CAREER Award, National Science Foundation, August 2020

  • P. C. Rossin Professorship, Lehigh, August 2018

  • ASCE ExCEEd Faculty Fellowship, ASCE, July 2018

  • Editors’ Citation for Excellence in Refereeing for Water Resources Research, AGU, April 2017

  • The Massachusetts Society of Professors Research Support Fund, UMass, October 2015

  • Flex Grants for Teaching/Faculty Development, UMass, April 2014

  • Scholarship of ESRI-GIS Development Center (EDC), UIUC April 2010

  • Certificate in Foundations of Teaching, UIUC, April 2009

  • Chester P. Siess Award, CEE, UIUC, April 2006

  • College of Science Dean Award, NTU, June 2002

  • Presidential Award, NTU, April 2000


  • Assistant Professor, August 2017 – present

        Civil and Environmental Engineering, Lehigh University

  • Research Assistant Professor, July 2013 – August 2017

Civil and Environmental Engineering, UMass

Leading, managing and working on projects sponsored by the World Bank and International Food Policy Research Institute and U. S. Deportment of Energy about Water-Energy-Food Nexus, Climate Change Impact Assessment, Agent-based modeling development and Water Resources Management in several different systems in the world.

  • Postdoctoral Research Scientist, July 2011 – June 2013

Civil and Environmental Engineering, UMass

Worked on climate change impact assessment of watershed management for South and Central Asia

  • Postdoctoral Research Associate, February 2010 – June 2011

Illinois State Water Survey, PRI, UIUC

Worked on holistic groundwater management with agent-based modeling and ubiquitous WebGIS analysis toolkit development

  • Research Assistant, August 2005 – May 2010  

Hydrosystem Lab., Department of CEE, UIUC

Worked on global & local water resources project, hydrological model (HEC-HMS, SWMM), data mining software (Genetic Programming), statistic software (Vista 6), water resources management model programming (MatLab, VC++, VBA, GAMS)

  • Research Staff/Teaching Grader, August 2004 – July 2005      

Sustainable Development Lab/ Hydrotech Research Institute, NTU

Worked on hydrological and water quality model (HSPF, QUAL2E) for streamflow regulation and water availability assessment, climate change and water resources management research project for ecological restoration, GIS software programming (ArcView 3.2, ArcGIS 9.1)

  • Graduate Student Assistant, July 2002 – June 2004

Sustainable Development Lab., Department of BSE, NTU

Worked on research project related to hydrology and water quality model (GWLF and QUAL2E)

  • Student Assistant, July 2000 – October 2001

Remote Sensing and Spatial Knowledge Lab., Department of Geography, NTU

Worked on GIS and RS data sampling, processing and analysis, GIS software programming.

  • Student Assistant, July 1999 – June 2000

Cartography and Multimedia Lab., Department of Geography, NTU

Worked on website design, digital image processing and map production.