Candidate Statements for Election of IAHR Technical Committee on Ecohydraulics

The IAHR Technical Committee on Ecohydraulics is currently holding an election for the Leadership team. There are 13 candidates for this election. 

Election messages will be sent through SurveyMonkey. The result will be announced on 3 March.

Candidate statements

1. For Chair

Michele Mossa

Personal statement

I am glad to apply as a candidate for the position of chair of the Committee on Ecohydraulics of the IAHR. I have contributed directly to the growth and development of IAHR through leadership roles. So far, my activities in the IAHR have been:

  • 2009 - 2015: Editor of Hydrolink.

  • 2009 - 2011: President of the IAHR Education and Professional Development Section.

  • 2007 - 2009: Secretary of the IAHR Education and Professional Development Section.

  • 2005 - 2020: Member of the Fluid Mechanics Committee of IAHR.

  • At present, my current activities in the IAHR are:

  • 2018 - present: Associate Editor of the Journal of Hydraulic Research.

  • 2005 - present: Editor of IAHR Media Library (

Mission and vision moving forward

1. Overall mission

A deeper knowledge of complex environmental flows should be pursued for research, technical and engineering interests. Because of the increasing stress placed on water resources throughout the world, a resurgence and reinvention of hydraulic engineering are necessary. It is my belief that Hydraulic research will be increasingly a cooperation with other experts and that researchers must respond to the need to manage and protect natural resources. I believe the committee will be able to play a key role in the new challenges we are called to face to safeguard our planet.

2. Short- and medium-term actions to implement the vision

The Green Deal requires us to look to the future of the economy and society by rethinking the concept of sustainability not as a constraint but as an opportunity to maximize the efficiency levels of the blue economy while preserving the natural resources essential to human well-being. To this end, a holistic and intersectoral approach is essential, capable of enhancing synergies to increase effectiveness and enhance the impact of the actions that need to be taken. Energy saving and efficiency, digitalization, and the principles of the circular economy as tools to support the blue economy are necessary for restoring the natural ecosystems to ensuring a sustainable use of resources. This Committee must lead all these actions by trying to speed up and maximize analysis campaigns and action plans for mitigation of the effects of climate change and allow the optimization of the use of natural resources by reducing waste.

This must happen through closer collaboration with fellow biologists, ecologists, and other experts, as several directives of interest for Ecohydraulics highlight (i.e., the EU Marine Strategy Framework Directive). The symbiotic relationship requires the establishment of an exchange, where this Committee will make available its resources.

Furthermore, important and specific actions must be implemented in particular for the involvement of young researchers and engineers, in order to provide them with proper training on the issues of environmental protection and climate change.

These will be the actions that I will try to carry out if elected, in order to grow the importance and impact of the IAHR and ensure the future of our planet.


Xiaodong Qu

Dr. Xiaodong Qu is a professor at the China institute of water resources and hydropower research (IWHR). He is a native of China and received his PhD at the Institute of Hydrobiology, Chinese Academy of Science (2001-2006).

As a postdoc, Dr. Xiaodong Qu worked on the species distribution pattern and the neutral theory of aquatic biodiversity at Pusan National University and Kyunghee University of the Republic of Korea. Since 2013, he was employed by the IWHR, and ever since the focus of his work was on environmental flow and ecosystem restoration of streams and rivers by using multiple Interdisciplinary research including hydrobiology, hydraulics, and watershed ecology.

Dr. Xiaodong Qu began to provide a range of support services as a co-opted member of Ecohydraulics Technical Committee from 2016 to 2020. He organized the 2nd JoE Webinar on Environmental flows and Water-Food-Energy-Ecology Nexus as Chair and assisted to organize the forum on ecological flow and ecological hydraulic engineering in Beijing. He also served as a member of the review board of the Journal of Ecohydraulics since 2016. Since 2014, he served as an executive member of the benthological Society of Asia. 

Personal statement

I commit to bringing my energy, experience, and international networks to enhance the development of the Ecohydraulics Technical Committee. Building on the great contributions laid by the past and current presidents, and all the other members, I intend to work with all members to accomplish the following plans.

During the presidential period, I intended to:

  • Strengthen the committee constructions, enhance international collaboration, and promote the advanced experiences, methods, and models related to the committee.

  • Promote Interdisciplinary research, attract more researchers to join the committee with different researches background, increase the membership significantly and especially for the young members in the Asian, African, and South American regions, new members exceed more than one hundred in the next four years.

  • Strengthen the committee publicity, including enhancing the construction of the community website, promoting activities at different conferences, and news reports about the committee activities.

  • Help to construct the communication platform, organize the website forum, manage and share collaborative files with the agreement of the leadership team.

  • Improve committee governance and administrative effectiveness, to define the annual working calendar for the committee and help the leadership team to organize what needs to get done as well as to track upcoming events, implement the development plans laid down by the Ecohydraulics Technical Committee.

  • Listen and closely collaborate with the EcoENet members and other young professionals of the IAHR, transfer their suggestions to the leadership and help to find the solutions for the young member to resolve their difficulties at both the theoretical aspect and technical aspects.

2. For Vice Chair

Daniele Tonina

Since I started studying the interaction between surface water and groundwater within the hyporheic zone, I have been enchanted by the incredible interaction, and in some cases symbiosis, between physical and abiotic processes. For instance, I am fascinated by how organisms change their environments to increase their chances to grow and prosper. Salmonids modify the streambed topography and hydraulic properties to drive oxygen-rich surface water toward their eggs buried within the gravel. Similarly, benthic organisms adapt their spatial distribution onto streambeds such that they cluster around specific chemical signatures of pore waters upwelling into the stream. I have been a member of IAHR since 2001 and I have been a member of the Ecohydraulics Leadership Team since 2020. I believe the IAHR Ecohydraulics Technical Committee is more than a committee and it is a dynamic community. It is an incredible and vibrant community; whose members catalyze innovative research to advance our ability to understand natural systems and from this knowledge to manage water resources in a sustainable manner for our and future generations. All the recent community initiatives from the Ecohydraulics webpage, the “ecohydraulics channel" with interviews of members to our own scientific journal, The Journal of Ecohydraulics, TJoE, are setting the stage for a successful future.

As Vice Chair of the team my goal will be to foster an environment that supports a diverse culture where new ideas and activities can grow. I would interact with the Chair, the LT members, ECoENet, IAHR and the broader ecohydraulics community to keep the momentum growing and maintaining our community as vibrant and dynamic as the subjects we study. I believe strengthening our journal profile, TJoE, would be a key element for our community. The quality of the articles published is high and increasing submissions would further improve its impact and consequently the relevance of our technical team. Increasing advertisement of our group to other societies will also help us grow and increase research in ecohydraulics with important implications for human society. 

Mengzhen Xu

I has been strongly tied with the activities of IAHR since 2008, and deeply appreciates the IAHR Ecohydraulics Community that helps my academic career. I delivered my first international presentation as an YPN member, and received valuable comments and encouragement from Prof. Joseph Hun-Wei Lee at the 16th IAHR-APD conference. Since then I have attended all of the IAHR world congresses and conferences organized by the IAHR Ecohydraulics Committee as presenter or session chair or organizer. I gained the J.F. Kennedy Award at the 35th IAHR World Congress with outstanding research in prevention of mussel invasion and biofouling in artificial water transfer systems. On the IAHR 85th Anniversary Summit, I delivered an invited talk on Ecohydraulics and Nature-based Solutions. Now I am serving as Leadership Team member of Ecohydraulics Committee, and associate editor of Journal of Ecohydraulics. We organized the 14th International Symposium on Ecohydraulics (ISE2022) successfully with great support from the whole Ecohydraulics Committee.

As a Ph. D supervisor, I enjoy helping the next generation to pursue their dreams. I always encourage the students to participate the IAHR activities, to learn and to share within the community. Several of my students have served as chairmen of IAHR-Tsinghua University YPN Chapter. We organize workshops regularly and invite great international professors as co-advisors to help the YPNs from different aspects. In addition, we send the YPNs to study in different international universities, and also receive students from different countries and regions to study in our institute. I like to travel with the YPNs for study and research. For instance, I spent a whole month traveling with the YPNs, attending the International Youth Forum on Water Engineering Management in Penang, Malaysia, and visiting the universities and industries in Ecuador.

I wish to be the Vice Chair of the Leadership Team of the Ecohydraulics Committee after two years’ serving as Leadership Team member. If elected as the Vice Chair:

  • I will continuously contribute my passion in Ecohydraulics research and teaching, and to educate the youth and through them to educate more people to care about the environment and ecology in their work and daily life using Ecohydraulics knowledge, helping river restoration and sustainable development with nature-based solutions and new technologies.

  • I will always happy to be advisor for the Tsinghua YPN as well as the other YPN organizations, helping them to build up strong connections to the world, encouraging the youth to contribute themselves in building a world with clean water, blue sky, and ecological friendly environment.

  • I strongly wish to continue contributing my effort to any academic or service work for the Ecohydraulics committee, including handling/reviewing papers and improving the impact of Journal of Ecohydraulics, organizing more Ecohydraulics events, and strengthening Ecohydraulics software/knowledge/new technique sharing platforms.

3. For Leadership Team Members

Andrés Vargas Luna

It is a great honor to be a nominee for the IAHR Ecohydraulics Leadership Team selection. I am Andrés Vargas  Luna, associate professor at the Pontificia Universidad Javeriana in Bogotá (Colombia). I've worked in river  morphodynamics and vegetated flows for the last ten years, partly including my time in Delft (The Netherlands),  where I conducted my Ph.D. I've been disseminating the acquired knowledge with my undergraduate and  graduate students. Currently, I am the head of the master's program in Hydrosystems at the Pontificia  Universidad Javeriana, lecturing courses on Ecohydraulics and River Morphodynamics. My approach to  understanding our riverine areas combines fieldwork, laboratory experiments, and numerical modeling. I am  running for a position in this LT with the primary goal of increasing the participation of professionals and students  from Latin America and the Caribbean within the Technical Committee. As far as I know, our region did not have  representation for a while, an aspect I am willing to change. Latin America needs an integrated approach and the  implementation of ecohydraulic tools to deal with the uprising pressures on our natural systems.

Binbin Wang

I am an assistant professor at the University of Missouri, and have a background in fluid dynamics and its environmental applications. An important theme in my research is to understand the interactions of water resources with aquatic ecosystems. For instance, my lab is interested in the effects of turbulence on the transport of eggs and larvae of invasive carps in large rivers. My lab also collaborates with biologists, ecologists, and engineers to understand the impact of sediments on freshwater mussels. I have conducted research on a variety of water bodies, including the Great Lakes, the Gulf of Mexico, and the Missouri River. 

As a member of several professional associations within the field of environmental fluid dynamics, I have been actively involved in organizing conference sessions/symposiums and participating in technical committee meetings. These experiences have allowed me to network with experts in various fields and to communicate with broad audiences. I am now seeking to further engage with the ecohydraulics community by joining the LT. I believe I can contribute to the growth of the community through collaborative efforts with other team members. I am also interested in editorial work and helping to develop strategical plans to serve the ecohydraulics and the broader IAHR communities.

Cosimo Peruzzi

I am a passionate hydraulic engineer with a PhD in open-channel fluid mechanics at the Polytechnic of Turin,  Italy. After some years of post-docs, I am now working as a researcher at the Italian Institute for  Environmental Protection and Research (ISPRA), in the Hydrology, Hydrodynamics, Hydromorphology and  Freshwater Ecology Department. During my career, I developed an interest in various topics, i.e., turbulence  properties of open-channel flows, dispersion of pollutants within rural channels and flow resistance exercised  by flexible vegetation. Now, I am mainly focusing on characterising fluvial habitats in different hydromorphodynamics conditions.  

As a member candidate for the Committee on Ecohydraulics Leadership Team, I would address the following  points: 1) highlighting current and potential research direction in order to promote a collective effort in our  scientific community; 2) strengthening the dialogue and connection with the Water Competent Authorities  in different countries to obtain a better understanding of their necessity; 3) helping young researchers who  are starting their careers (especially PhD fellows) to feel part of a community with a common vision and  direction. I think that, by increasing the attention to these three pillars (i.e. common research goals, dialogue  with institutions, and young-researcher growth), the Committee on Ecohydraulics can lead fruitful actions for the well-being of the IAHR association and, more generally, for the society/environment.

Dongdong Shao

I am currently an Associate Professor and the Head of the Department of Ecological Engineering at the School of Environment at Beijing Normal University, China. I obtained my PhD from Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, and worked in Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research and Technology as Postdoctoral Associate before joining the BNU faculty. My research is primarily focused on hydro-/morpho-dynamics and vegetation dynamics of coastal wetlands and pollutant transport in coastal waters.

In recent years, I have built a strong collaboration network with colleagues from Delft University of Technology, University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science, University of Dundee etc. I have been a member of the IAHR/IWA Joint Committee on Marine Outfall Systems (2012-2022) and is currently the Coordinator of the Yellow River Delta Wing of the Delta Alliance. I have served on the International Scientific Committee on several IAHR-sponsored conferences including the 22nd IAHR-APD Congress (Sapporo, 2020), 38th IAHR World Congress (Panama, 2019), 12th International Symposium on Ecohydraulics (Tokyo, 2018), etc. I have been Special Issue Guest-Editors of several scientific journals, and joining the editorial board of Journal of Hydro-environment Research as an Associate Editor starting from 2022.

Leveraging on my existing IAHR leadership team experience, international collaboration, conference and editorial activities, my intended service and contribution to Ecohydraulics LT will mainly focus on:

  • l Achieving a more balanced LT scope between riverine (inland) and coastal/marine systems.

  • l Providing mid-career perspective to resonate with both junior and senior colleagues.

  • Enhancing communication and collaboration between Chinese and global community.

Donatella Termini

Full Professor in Hydraulics, University of Palermo, (Italy).

Present research efforts include investigation in fluvial hydraulics and eco-hydraulics (flow resistance, effect of  vegetation, sediment transport, effects of biotic communities), river morphological evolution both through experimental  and numerical investigations. More than 200 papers published in proceedings of national and international congresses  and in ISI journals. Leader or collaborator of national or EU research projects. Organizing chair of“M.S.Yalin  Memorial Colloquium" years: 2013, 2015, 2023. Reviewer for many international journals; Guest Editor of the Journal  Advances in Water Resources–Elsevier; Member of IAHR Fluvial Committe.

Visiting professor and research fellows

  • 2019 Visiting Professor at“Federal Rural University”-Pernambuco-Brazil

  • 2019 Visiting Professor at Queen's University-Kingston– Canada 

  • 2018 Research staying at "Lab. des-Écoulements Géophysiques et Industriels" (LEGI)–Grenoble, France 

  • 2015 Research staying at IGB, Berlin, Germany

  • 2007 Research staying at Queen's University - Kingston – Canada

  • 1993 Research staying at Queen's University - Kingston– Canada


  • 2022 ITTWIN Award for high specialization – University of Bari (Italy)

  • 2019 Award of Best Researcher 2019 in Hydrodynamics and Fluvial processes RULA AWARDS & IJRULA

  • 2018“Sapio" award for the research and the innovation - sector Safety

  • 2007: Karl Emil Hilgard Hydraulic Prize”, by ASCE.

  • 2010: GII-Idra Prize for best poster


As active member of IAHR Ecohydraulics Committee I will promote actions (interactive working groups, seminars,  colloquium,..) stimulating active participation of young researchers and establishing links between leading scientist and  young researchers. Among various activities, there is also the possibility to promote the organization of Riverflow 2026 in Palermo (Italy).

Giuseppe Francesco Cesare Lama

I am a young researcher on Eochydraulics at the Department of Environmental, Civil and  Architectural Engineering (DICEA) at the University of Naples Federico II (Italy). I am a hydraulic and environmental engineer with a PhD in open-channel hydraulics at the same University. My main  topics covers the scientific fields of Ecohydraulics, Hydrology, Hydrodynamics and Hydromorphology associated with vegetated water steams, with a special focus on turbulence, water  resources management and riparian zones, by considering experimental analysis, modeling, and  numerical simulations.

As a member candidate for the Committee on Ecohydraulics Leadership Team, I would address the  following points: i) supporting young-career researchers (especially PhD fellows and post-doc  researchers) to join the worldwide community of Ecohydraulics; ii) strengthening the interactions between environmental politics and scientists to promote the collaborations for common goals in the  climate change era; iii) proposing novel stimulating research directions to improve the understanding  of the most relevant Ecohydraulic challenges in our planet.

Jeffrey A. Tuhtan

Dr. Tuhtan is an internationally educated ecohydraulic engineer with a BSc. from CalPoly, USA and MSc. and Dr.-Eng. Degrees from Uni Stuttgart, Germany. He has worked for nearly two decades as an international consultant and academic on the effects of hydropower on fish habitats and down and upstream passage. The research focus of his group at the Tallinn University of Technology, Estonia is founded on a simple principle: “what gets measured, gets done.” The only substantial contribution of Dr. Tuhtan as a LT member will be to create standards for ecohydraulics as a discipline. Without clearly defined, scientifically-based and communicable standards as a community, ecohydraulics cannot serve the needs of its stakeholders, partners or institutions. Without a doubt, the next generation of ecohydraulic practitioners will face innumerable and complex challenges. Without science-based, community standards, the probability that these challenges can be met using resilient and scalable solutions is severely diminished, and many valiant efforts will be rendered useless. Dr. Tuhtan is a not a geopolitically motivated candidate, nor a person who requires an LT position to advance their professional career. His experience in doing international, difficult, large-scale ecohydraulics projects is offered to the community to begin the creation of much-needed Ecohydraulic standards. As a community, we will build, grow, thrive and survive based on our standards: but we must stand together and create them first.

Rui Rivaes

I am Rui Rivaes, a PhD researcher at University of Lisbon, Portugal. I have been working on ecohydraulics for approximately a decade, particularly focused on the interactions of riverine vegetation with river flow, and its consequences on fluvial processes and remaining biota (for more information about my research activity, I invite you to look at my ORCID: 0000-0001-7910-4387 or Researcher ID: L-1465-2016). As you can notice, this may not be a dominant topic in ecohydraulics, with usually smaller audiences in specialized conferences, but that is why I consider to make a good contribution to enrich the IAHR Ecohydraulics Technical Committee – to provide a broader perspective to this Technical Committee with a greater diversity on the viewpoints regarding fluvial hydraulics. In fact, my proposal to accomplish as a regular LT member is to strengthen ties between ecohydraulics research areas. Furthermore, I think that my awareness and experience about the role of riverine vegetation hydraulics on the entire fluvial ecosystem functioning and processes, as well as on hydro-sociology, could provide a greater outreach and visibility to this ecohydraulics community. Therefore, my participation in the Technical Committee would bring to the discussion a broader set of interests regarding ecohydraulics, thus contributing to a more comprehensive network among different research areas, and a stronger bond between community members towards a more unified and influential group on ecohydraulics interests worldwide.

Sebastian Schwindt

As an advocate for Open Science and digitization, I am dedicated to the advancement and dissemination of digital tools in hydraulics. Still, I won't shy away from getting my hands dirty while working in rivers (literally).

Today, I am the group leader of the hydro-morphological modeling group at the Institute for Modelling Hydraulic and Environmental Systems at the University of Stuttgart in Germany. My background and core expertise lie in Civil and Environmental Engineering. During my postdoc, I dove deep into the ecohydraulics and morphology of the Yuba River in California and I couldn't let go of the topic. That's why upon returning as a group leader to a Civil Engineering department, I am committed to easing connecting pipelines between hydraulic engineering, geomorphology, and ecology through a proactive digital knowledge campaign. To see an example, visit or my YouTube channel

As a member of the IAHR Ecohydraulics Leadership Team, I will work to promote digital methods and foster collaboration between engineers, geomorphologists, and ecologists. If Open Science and cross-disciplinary communication are also important to you, I hope you'll give me your supporting vote.

Tim Marjoribanks

I am a Senior Lecturer (Associate Professor) in Water Engineering at Loughborough University (UK). My research focuses primarily on the eco-hydrodynamics of open channel flows. In particular, I am interested in improving our understanding of the dynamic interaction between flow and vegetation within rivers and coastal environments. I am passionate about ecohydraulics as a research topic that represents an intersection of many different inter-related disciplines and provides a solution to river and coastal management that goes beyond traditional siloed thinking. Since completing my PhD in 2013, I have collaborated on eco-hydraulics research with researchers in UK, France, Germany, Italy, India and Japan.

I am keen to play my role in growing and developing our community through serving as member of the leadership team. In particular, my two main priorities would be to:

  • Maximise opportunities for engagement across the whole ecohydraulics community through virtual events. In-person conferences are essential, but we must recognise that they are prohibitively expensive for many researchers. Extending online activities (workshops, seminars) will allow a broader engagement internationally which will enhance the growth of the community (and thus enhance our physical ISE events too)

  • Continue to expand the breadth of researchers brought into the community. The strength of the community is derived from the representation of different disciplinary and geographic communities. Through engaging with discipline-specific communities and events beyond IAHR on shared interests (e.g. nature-based solutions), and using international connections, we can extend the reach and profile of the community.

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