Researchers and Administration

Project Directors


Michael H. Taylor Photo



Michael H. Taylor, Project Director

Michael H. Taylor is an Associate Professor in the Department of Economics at the University of Nevada, Reno and a State Specialist with University of Nevada Cooperative Extension. Dr. Taylor’s recent work includes studying residential water conservation in the Reno-Sparks area and analyzing the regional economic impacts of water scarcity for Las Vegas.


Phone:    (775) 784-1679

Address:  1664 North Virginia St. MS0204 / Reno, Nevada 89557-0154


Gabrielle Boisrame

Gabrielle Boisrame, co-Project Director

Gabrielle Boisrame is a postdoctoral fellow in hydrology at the Desert Research Institute, focusing on plant-water interactions in changing landscapes. Research areas range from wetland restoration to snowpack-streamflow interactions. Past work focused on water balance changes due to fire suppression in wildfire-adapted ecosystems of the Sierra Nevada in California. Research methods include modeling, statistical data analysis, remote sensing analysis, and various types of field measurements. She has also worked on water resource management issues as a scientist for California’s Delta Stewardship Council. Contact:


Rosemary Carroll

Rosemary Carroll, co-Project Director

Dr. Rosemary Carroll is an Associate Research Professor at the Desert Research Institute. Areas of research include groundwater flow and transport, stable isotope mass balance modeling to predict groundwater flow and stream water source, watershed processes related to snow accumulation and melt, and wetlands as response units to climate change. She has developed several models to quantify basin-wide water balances with respect to agricultural water use and helped couple these hydrologic models to human decision making. Currently, Dr. Carroll is actively working to develop partnerships between local stakeholders, regional water managers and federal agencies to understand linkages between headwater basins and downstream water use. Contact:


Dr. Chris Goemans

Christopher Goemans, co-Project Director

Christopher Goemans is an associate professor of agricultural and resource economics at Colorado State University, focusing on the allocation and management of water resources. Dr. Goemans’ past work includes investigating impacts associated with water transfers, the relationship between increased climatic variability and the effectiveness of regional water management schemes, and optimal demand management strategies during periods of drought. Contact:


Dr. Adrian Harpold

Adrian Harpold, co-Project Director

Adrian Harpold is an assistant professor in ecohydrology in the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Science at the University of Nevada, Reno. Dr. Harpold’s research threads together snow, catchment, and eco-hydrology using field and remote sensing observations and models. He currently manages projects investigating snowpack response to climate change and forest management in the Sierra Nevada and Great Basin. Contact:


Dr. Elizabeth Koebele

Elizabeth Koebele, co-Project Director

Elizabeth Koebele is an assistant professor of political science at the University of Nevada, Reno. Her research and teaching interests include collaborative environmental governance, water in the West (Colorado River and Lake Tahoe Basin), urban water management, disasters and hazards policy (wildfire and flooding), public policy theory and qualitative/mixed methods. She is particularly interested in how collaborative approaches to policymaking shape the policy process and its outcomes. Contact:


Dr. Bryan Leonard

Bryan Leonard, co-Project Director

Bryan Leonard is an Assistant Professor at the School of Sustainability at Arizona State University. Dr. Leonard's research focuses on the evolution and performance of different institutional responses to natural resource and environmental problems, with emphasis on how formal and informal property rights affect coordination and collective action for managing natural resources. His research combines models of natural resource use and the institutional and legal settings in which property rights emerge with econometric analysis of historic and modern data sets created using GIS. Contact:


Dr. Dale Manning

Dale Manning, co-Project Director

Dale Manning is an assistant professor of agricultural and resource economics at Colorado State University. Dr. Manning has worked extensively with models evaluating the economic efficiency of water allocations in the western US. His work includes an investigation of optimal reservoir management in Colorado, producer responses to information on water availability from seasonal snowpack, and optimal technology adoption on farms. His current work evaluates the impact of alternative groundwater conservation policies in Colorado. Contact:


Dr. Kym Pram

Kym Pram, co-Project Director

Kym Pram is an Assistant Professor of Economics at University of Nevada, Reno. Dr. Pram's research area is microeconomic theory including both work on foundational issues in game theory and social choice theory and more applied work. His current research looks at the effects of technologies that make it possible for firms and consumers to share information, for example the impact of genetic testing technologies in health insurance markets. Contact:


Dr. Kim Rollins

Kimberly Rollins, co-Project Director

Kimberly Rollins is the head of the agriculture and resource economics department at the University of Connecticut specializing in natural resource economics. Dr. Rollins has worked on problems associated with allocation of public goods, mechanisms to align social and private incentives, and non-market valuation. Her work has frequently included collaborations with ecologists and other natural scientists, policy-makers, resource managers and others working in fields related to natural resources and environment. Contact:


Dr. Ben Ruddell

Benjamin Ruddell, co-Project Director

Benjamin Ruddell is the Director and Associate Professor of the School of Informatics, Computing, and Cyber Systems at Northern Arizona University, the President of Ruddell Environmental consulting, the Director of the National Water-Economy Project (NWEP) and the Director of the FEWSion project. Dr. Ruddell’s expertise supports integration of hydrologic, atmospheric, and economics research and Extension outreach specific to water footprints. His research interests fall broadly in the area of the quantification and management of complex coupled natural-human systems, including regional water and climate systems strongly influenced by the human economy and society- such as in cities, energy, and agriculture.  Contact:


Dr. Loretta Singletary

Loretta Singletary, co-Project Director

Loretta Singletary is the interdisciplinary outreach liaison with the University of Nevada Cooperative Extension and a professor in the Department of Economics at UNR. Dr. Singletary is nationally recognized for her collaborative research approaches to investigating water resource issues. She is interested in the application of environmental mediation, conflict resolution, and collaborative learning concepts and skills to participatory and collaborative research practices. Contact:


Dr. Abigail York

Abigail York, co-Project Director

Abigail York is an associate professor and associate director for social sciences at the Center for Biodiversity Outcomes at Arizona State University (ASU). Dr. York has examined issues including urbanization in the southwest USA, collaborative environmental governance, land use policy adoption, land use and environmental injustice in Phoenix, and water policy and agricultural livelihoods and transitions in Arizona. Her research agenda pushes forward our understanding of governance dynamics by investigating how changes in policies and rules affect the social, environmental, and community conditions and in turn how changes in social, environmental, and community context lead, or do not lead, to changes in governance. Contact:



Post-Doctoral Researchers



Bernard Baah-Kumi, Post-Doctoral Researcher

Bernard Baah-Kumi is a postdoctoral scholar (economics of water resources) in the Department of Economics at the University of Nevada, Reno. He earned his Ph.D. from New Mexico State University in 2020. Bernard is interested in interdisciplinary approaches to investigations of water policy issues. His research areas include integrated watershed management, policy formulation for water resources development, transboundary water sharing, and institutional strengthening. His recent work on integrated basin analysis has been applied to the Volta Basin in West Africa and Nairobi and Merti Aquifers in East Africa. Contact:


Melakeneh Gedefaw, Post-Doctoral Researcher

Melakeneh is a postdoctoral researcher in the Complex Systems Informatics Laboratory, School of Informatics, Computing, and Cyber Systems at Northern Arizona University. Dr. Gedefaw has worked on Remote Sensing, vegetation monitoring, landscape ecology, drought, and rangeland degradation. His current work focuses on the resilience of global supply chains, and agricultural adaptation modeling with climate change and water shortages.  Contact:


Graduate Students



Joey Blumberg, Graduate Student

Joey Blumberg is a 4th year PhD student of Agricultural and Resource Economics at Colorado State University. He previously earned his MS in Applied Economics and Policy Analysis and BS in Agribusiness Economics and Management from the University of Arizona. In his dissertation research, Joey covers topics such as irrigation technology adoption, the efficiency of water allocation mechanisms, and the quantification of climate change damages. Contact:


Kat Fowler, Graduate Student

Kat is a second-year PhD student in ecoinformatics in the Complex Systems Informatics Laboratory at Northern Arizona University. She is interested in complex systems and how resilience in those systems is related to shocks, disturbances, and variation. Her current work focuses on making supply chains, farming communities, and watersheds more resilient through computational techniques and interdisciplinary collaborations. In her free time she is usually biking, climbing, reading, or roasting coffee.  Contact:


Ahmed Gharib, Graduate Student

Ahmed is a PhD student in the civil and environmental engineering department at Colorado State University. He got his BSc in water and environmental engineering and MSc in irrigation and hydraulics engineering from Cairo University, Egypt. He loves studying and working on water-related topics, especially water management and hydro-informatics. He appreciates his social life and spends a lot of time with his wife, raising his kids, and increasing his faith. In his free time, he runs. Contact:


Bea Gordon


Bea Gordon, Graduate Student

Bea’s work investigates the impacts of changing mountain snowmelt on downstream users in the western US. Prior, she was a researcher at Stanford University focused on finance and water management. She graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Stanford University and holds an MS in Rangeland Ecology and Watershed Management from the University of Wyoming. She was raised on a ranch in rural Wyoming and enjoys backcountry skiing, reading, and running with her dog in her free time.  Contact:


Samjhana Koirala, Graduate Student

Samjhana Koirala is a Ph.D. Student in the Agricultural and Resource Economics department at the University of Connecticut. Her current research work studies the distribution of costs from more frequent early peak flow rates of snowmelt from western mountain snowpacks on agriculture and municipal uses of that water and evaluates how the distribution of costs would vary under different systems of management and institutional rules. Her research interest also includes the study of the mechanism of how the different groups of people in terms of accessibility to the resources staying in coastal areas adapt to increasing incidents of flooding, storm surges, and hurricanes.  Contact:


Jesse Jo Rego, Graduate Student

Jesse Jo Rego is a Master’s student in the Graduate Program of Hydrologic Sciences at the University of Nevada, Reno. She received her Bachelor of Science degree in Environmental Science and Policy at Southern Oregon University with a minor in Economics. Her research has focused on gender economics and the socioeconomic impacts of protected areas, as well as water markets and water resource policy. She is especially interested in studying water economics and policy in agricultural basins in the western U.S.  Jesse Jo is also the 2022 recipient of the UNR Graduate School’s Robert E. Dickenson Scholarship.  Contact:


Katherine Wright, Graduate Student

Katherine Wright is working on her PhD in Sustainability at Arizona State University. She is interested in evaluating current policies that address water scarcity, as well as the role of historical institutions in allocating water. Her research uses novel spatial data to better understand how climate change will affect the durability of property rights, institutions, and present policies used to address water scarcity. Contact:


Muhammad Umer Zahid, Graduate Student

Muhammad Umer Zahid is a second year PhD student at the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics at the University of Connecticut. Some of his recent work revolved around Non-Market Valuation methods to estimate valuation for wildfire fuel treatment and water clarity programs at Lake Tahoe region. He is also working on estimating the impact of climate change-induced flooding on real estate values and housing insurance market. Previously, Umer has worked with international consultancies and Government of Pakistan on various developmental projects.  Contact:


Affiliated Faculty



Mazdak Arabi, Ph.D.

Dr. Arabi is the Borland Endowed Professor of Water Resources in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering (CEE) at Colorado State University (CSU). His research, education, and engagement activities focus on the development of scientific approaches and analysis tools that enable integrated water resource management in a changing world. His primary expertise includes hydrologic assessment, watershed modeling, water quality control, and system identification and optimization. Contact:


Christopher Copp, Doctoral Candidate

Christopher Copp is a doctoral candidate in the Interdisciplinary Social Psychology Program at the University of Nevada, Reno.  His interests are in program evaluation, technology, political science, and criminal justice.  Contact:



William P. Evans, Ph.D.

William P. Evans is a Professor of Human Development and Education at the University of Nevada, Reno, and holds joint appointments with Extension, the Interdisciplinary Doctoral Program in Social Psychology, and the Nutrition and Justice Studies graduate programs. His research interests focus on resiliency modeling, evaluation, and youth development.  Contact:



Erica Hall, Project Manager

University of Nevada, Reno Research & Innovation Division


Phone:     (775) 784-4505

Address:  1664 North Virginia St. MS0325 / Reno, Nevada 89557-0154


Olga Ilchuk


Olga Ilchuk, Collaborative Research Framework Support

Olga Ilchuk is administrative faculty in the Department of Economics at the University of Nevada, Reno and University of Nevada Cooperative Extension. Ms. Ilchuk has worked previously on several large interdisciplinary projects, including the National Science Foundation-funded Water for the Seasons and Native Waters on Arid Lands projects. Contact:


Past Project Team Members



Egan Cornachione


Egan Cornachione

Egan was a graduate student at the University of Nevada, Reno studying Economics and Animal and Rangeland Science. His research interests are public lands, natural resources and water economics.


Ethan Grumstrup

Ethan Grumstrup earned his Ph.D. from the University of Nevada, Reno in 2020. During his time with the SNOWPACS team he designed a theoretical economic model which incorporated sub-annual variation of water availability into the production decision of agriculture producers to determine the effect on welfare of earlier snowmelt in snowmelt dependent water basins. This work was presented at the 2021 Agricultural and Applied Economics Association conference.


Reid Hensen


Reid Hensen

Reid was in his first year of the M.S. program in the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics at Colorado State University. He received a bachelors in Psychology from the University of Montana and grew up in Colorado. Before coming back to school, Reid was working as a ranch manager for a large scale sheep and cattle operation in Idaho. His research interests are agricultural production and land economics. In his free time you can find him riding bikes, skiing, running, fishing, or playing music.


Shelby Hockaday


Shelby Hockaday

Shelby Hockaday received her B.S. in Earth Sciences: Geography from Oregon State University where she studied conflict-negotiation for water resources. Formerly in project management for an international development contractor, she was a Master's student in the Department of Geography at the University of Nevada, Reno studying western water law in the United States and adaptations to prior appropriation in response to water scarcity and climate change. 


Sesh Rajagopal, Ph.D.