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Nandita Basu

Professor and University Research Chair, Global Water Sustainability and Ecohydrology

Contact InformationNandita Basu

Phone: 519-888-4567 x37917
Location: E2 2327

Biography Summary

Dr. Nandita Basu is a Professor of Global Water Sustainability and Ecohydrology, jointly appointed between the Departments of Civil and Environmental Engineering and Earth and Environmental Sciences at the University of Waterloo. She is an Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Hydrology, Director of the Collaborative Water Program at the University of Waterloo, elected Member of the Royal Society College of New Scholars, Artists, and Scientists, and an Earth Leadership Fellow.

Nandita Basu is internationally renowned in the fields of water sustainability and ecohydrology, where her team has laid critical groundwork to address both fundamental science and applied management questions on nutrient pollution in anthropogenic landscapes. She is an environmental engineer, who uses data science, process modeling and remote sensing to explore how climate, land use, and management impacts surface and groundwater quality across agricultural, urban and forested landscapes, and from watershed to the regional and global scales. Her research leverages these insights to develop watershed management strategies that maximizes environmental benefits without significant economic costs.

National and international collaboration has extended the reach and impact of Dr. Basu’s work. She leads a $2.4M Tri-agency project that connects hydrologists, biogeochemists, ecologists and economists with stakeholders across Canada to develop approaches for managing the water quality of lake basins. She co-leads a $1.7M EU Joint Programming Initiative project to expand this work globally, connecting Waterloo with academic experts from Sweden, Denmark and Portugal. Dr. Basu has served on many advisory and technical committees, including the International Joint Commissions’ Science Advisory Board – Science Priority Committee, established under the Canada-USA Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement.

Research Interests

  • Watershed biogeochemistry and land use change Nutrient Legacies and Water quality
  • Watershed Modeling
  • Environmental and ecosystem hydrology
  • Contaminant fate and transport
  • Wetland restoration
  • Food-water-energy nexus
  • Sociohydrology
  • Water resources sustainability


  • 2006, Doctorate, Civil Engineering, Purdue University
  • 2000, Master of Engineering, Environmental Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur


  • CIVE 382 - Hydrol & Open Channel Flow
    • Taught in 2017, 2018, 2019
  • CIVE 497 - Special Topics in Civil Eng
    • Taught in 2019, 2020
  • CIVE 770 - Topics in Environmental Eng
    • Taught in 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020
* Only courses taught in the past 5 years are displayed.

Selected/Recent Publications

  • Van Meter, KJ and Basu, NB and Veenstra, JJ and Burras, CL, The nitrogen legacy: emerging evidence of nitrogen accumulation in anthropogenic landscapes, Environmental Research Letters, 11(3), 2016
  • Van Meter, Kimberly J and McLaughlin, Daniel L and Basu, Nandita B, The socioecohydrology of rainwater harvesting in India: understanding water storage and release dynamics across spatial scales, Hydrology and Earth System Sciences, 20(7), 2016
  • Gall, Heather E and Basu, Nandita B and Mashtare, Michael L and Rao, P Suresh C and Lee, Linda S, Assessing the impacts of anthropogenic and hydro-climatic drivers on estrogen legacies and trajectories, Advances in Water Resources, 87, 2016, 19 - 28
  • Cohen, Matthew J and Creed, Irena F and Alexander, Laurie and Basu, Nandita B and Calhoun, Aram JK and Craft, Christopher and D’Amico, Ellen and DeKeyser, Edward and Fowler, Laurie and Golden, Heather E and others, Do geographically isolated wetlands influence landscape functions?, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 113(8), 2016, 1978 - 1986
  • Sloan, Brandon P and Basu, Nandita B and Mantilla, Ricardo, Hydrologic impacts of subsurface drainage at the field scale: Climate, landscape and anthropogenic controls, Agricultural Water Management, 165, 2016, 1 - 10
  • Basu, N.B. and Van Meter, K.J., Changing Waters: Role of Climate-Driven Changes in Discharge Regimes in Increasing Eutrophication Risk in the Great Lakes Basin, 12 , Washington DC.
  • Basu, N.B., Van Meter, K.J., and Van Capellen, P., Beyond the Mass Balance: Modeling Legacy Phosphorus Dynamics in a Great Lakes Watershed, 12 , Washington DC.
  • Basu, N.B., Biogeochemical Hotspots: Role of Small Water Bodies in Watershed Nutrient Processing, 09 , Online.
  • Basu, N.B., Back to the Future: How Past Land Use Impacts current Water Quality, 11 , Columbus, OH, USA.

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