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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.  

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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.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 2 - Zero Hunger
  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 6 - Clean Water and Sanitation
  • SDG 7 - Affordable and Clean Energy
  • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities
  • SDG 13 - Climate Action
  • SDG 14 - Life Below Water
  • SDG 15 - Life on Land

Research expertise keywords

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


Dive into the research topics where Sally Thompson is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.
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