I am Research fellow in the Department of Infrastructure Engineering at the University of Melbourne. I obtained my PhD in Environmental Engineering at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim, and my MSc and BSc in Forestry Engineering and Natural Resources Management at the University of Lleida, Catalonia, Spain, with a one-year stage at the University of Aberdeen, Scotland, UK.
My general research interests lie on the analysis of environmental changes occurring in rivers, particulary in regulated systems where more often difficult decisions on how best to balance water demands and environmental protection need to be made. I have experience in the topic from both a pure research and applied angles, providing me with the view that firm scientific understanding on environmental processes should be the base for the management of aquatic ecosystems.
To date, my lines of research have focused on the interlinks between physical and ecological processes in freshwater ecosystems. I have studied river systems at several spatial scales, from the biological response to physical changes in the hyporheic zone (patch-scale), the hydraulic modelling of dynamic mesohabitats and drying-out areas at the reach scale, to the analysis of environmentally friendly hydropower operations at the catchment scale.
Currently, following up from my PhD research, I am interested on the physical processes occurring in the the hyporheic zone and areas of groundwater upwelling during hydrological disturbances (flood, drought) in extreme climatic conditions (heat, cold). I am particularly interested in the role of these areas to buffer extreme water temperatures, and their potential to serve as aquatic ecology refugia for key organisms. Such research will be very valuable for the future management of regulated rivers in the context of a changing climate.