• The University of Western Australia (M051), 35 Stirling Highway,

    6009 Perth


  • 1757 Citations
  • 23 h-Index

Research output per year

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Personal profile

Roles and responsibilities

Lead, Surface and Eco- Hydrology Research Group, School of Civil, Environmental and Mining Engineering


Surface hydrology, ecohydrology, nonlinear dynamics, ecophysiology, mathematical modeling, sociohydrology, global change


Sally received her undergraduate degrees (in Environmental Chemistry and Environmental Engineering) from the University of Western Australia.  She worked as an engineering consultant for several years, before starting her PhD with the support of a General Sir John Monash Award at Duke University in 2006.  Upon graduating in 2010, Sally worked as a postdoctoral scholar at Princeton and Purdue Universities.  She was appointed Assistant Professor of Surface Hydrology at the University of California, Berkeley, in 2012, and promoted to Associate Professor with tenure in 2017, at which time she was also appointed the inaugural Claire and Hsieh-Wen Shen Distinguished Research Chair.  Sally began work at the University of Western Australia in 2019.  Sally is also the recipient of the US National Science Foundation CAREER award, the American Geophysical Union Early Career Award in Hydrology, and the European Geophysical Union Jim Dooge Award for "best paper" in Hydrology and Earth System Science.  

Research interests

Sally is an ecohydrologist who asks in her research: "What do changes in ecosystems and vegetation mean for water?  What do changes in water cycling mean for life? and What consequences does the link between life and water have for human and natural systems?"

Answering these questions takes her around the world - her current projects are based in the US, Brazil, India, Ethiopia and Australia - and uses a broad suite of tools, including mathematical modeling, remote sensing, and field observations.

Research expertise keywords

  • Ecohydrology
  • Surface Hydrology
  • Hydrogeology
  • Nonlinear dynamics
  • Mathematical modeling
  • Hydraulics
  • Stormwater
  • Overland flow
  • Ecophysiology

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Research Output

A process-based approach to attribution of historical streamflow decline in a data-scarce and human-dominated watershed

Penny, G., Srinivasan, V., Apoorva, R., Jeremiah, K., Peschel, J., Young, S. & Thompson, S., 15 Apr 2020, In : Hydrological Processes. 34, 8, p. 1981-1995 15 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • 1 Citation (Scopus)

    Resistance Formulations in Shallow Overland Flow Along a Hillslope Covered With Patchy Vegetation

    Crompton, O., Katul, G. G. & Thompson, S., 1 May 2020, In : Water Resources Research. 56, 5, e2020WR027194.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • Tributary confluences are dynamic thermal refuges for a juvenile salmonid in a warming river network

    Wang, T., Kelson, S. J., Greer, G., Thompson, S. E. & Carlson, S. M., 28 Apr 2020, In : River Research and Applications.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Open Access
  • Weather underground: subsurface hydrologic processes mediate tree vulnerability to extreme climatic drought

    McLaughlin, B. C., Blakey, R., Weitz, A. P., Feng, X., Brown, B. J., Ackerly, D. D., Dawson, T. E. & Thompson, S. E., 14 Feb 2020, In : Global Change Biology.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • 2 Citations (Scopus)


    Supporting information: Weather underground: subsurface hydrologic processes mediate tree vulnerability to extreme climatic drought.

    McLaughlin, B. (Creator), Blakey, R. (Creator), Weitz, A. P. (Creator), Feng, X. (Creator), Brown, B. J. (Creator), Ackerly, D. (Creator), Dawson, T. E. (Creator), Thompson, S. (Creator), John Wiley & Sons, 14 Feb 2020