Global Institute for Water Security

Academic Background

Dr. Zelalem Tesemma has more than ten years’ experience in watershed hydrology, water research, water modeling and consulting. He completed his PhD in 2016 on investigating the impacts of climate change on runoff through integrating the relationship between vegetation and climatic fluctuations into a hydrological model. He worked as a research associate for the department of infrastructure engineering, the University of Melbourne before he joined SMEC-International as a water resources engineer for various engineering projects. He is now postdoctoral fellow with GWF at the University of Saskatchewan.

Research Interests and Expertise

Dr. Tesemma has expertise in physically-based and conceptual watershed and river modelling, climate and land use/cover change analysis and application remote sensing products in watershed modelling and has focused on integrating these areas to support understanding, modelling and management of the various component of the water cycle.

Research Keywords

  • Data assimilation
  • Watershed hydrology
  • Watershed and river modelling
  • Climate and land use change


Wei YP, Wu SL, Tesemma, Z., 2018. Re-orienting technology development for the more sustainable human–environmental relationship. Curr Opin Environ Sustain, 33 In press

Tesemma, Z. K., Wei, Y., Peel, M. C., and Western, A. W., 2015. The effect of year-to-year variability of leaf area index on variable infiltration capacity model performance and simulation of streamflow during drought, Advance in Water Resources, 83, 310-322, 10.1016/j.advwatres.2015.07.002

Tesemma, Z. K., Wei, Y., Peel, M. C., and Western, A. W., 2015. Including the dynamic relationship between climate variables and vegetation productivity into a hydrological model to improve streamflow prediction under climate change, Hydrology and Earth System Science, 19, 2821–2836, 10.5194/hess-19-2821-2015

Tesemma, Z. K., Wei, Y., Western, A. W., and Peel, M. C., 2014. Leaf area index variation for cropland, pasture and tree in response to climatic variation in the Goulburn-Broken catchment, Australia, Journal of Hydrometeorology, 10.1175/JHM-D-13-0108.1 Lu, S., Ouyang, N., Wu, B., Wei, Y., and Tesemma, Z. K., 2013. Lake water volume calculation with time series remote-sensing images, International Journal of Remote Sensing, 34, 7962-7973, 10.1080/01431161.2013.827814

Tesemma, Z. K., Mohamed, Y. A., and Steenhuis, T. S., 2010. Trends in rainfall and runoff in the Blue Nile Basin: 1964–2003, Hydrological Processes, 24, 3747-3758, 10.1002/hyp.7893