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Advisory Committee

To guide the Forum in its choice of topics, invited participants and location, the chair and an advisory committee of academic and policy leaders from varying countries plans each conference. Local host country members also serve on the committee on a limited term.



Chair, Soroosh Sorooshian, Civil & Environmental Engineering and Earth System Science, UC Irvine

Soroosh is the Director of the Center for Hydrometeorology & Remote Sensing (CHRS) and Distinguished Professor of Civil & Environmental Engineering and Earth System Science Departments at UC Irvine. Prior to 2003 he was a faculty at the University of Arizona for 20 years. His area of expertise is Hydrometeorology, water resources systems, climate studies and application of remote sensing to earth science problems with special focus on the hydrologic cycle and water resources issues of arid and semi-arid zones. He is a member of the US National Academy of Engineering (NAE), the International Academy of Astronautics (IAA) and fellow of TWAS. He is the current Chair of UC Rosenberg International Forum on Water Policy. Currently Sorooshian and his group are working on developing global hydrometeorological data sets and information using remote sensing for use by the water resources water community.


Advisory Committee


Christina Babbitt, Enterprise Sustainability, Starbucks

Christina is the water stewardship senior manager at Starbucks. In her role, Christina serves as the company’s lead water advisor, working across the enterprise and the industry to deliver thought leadership, overarching strategy, deep subject matter expertise and actionable guidance on topics including water, biodiversity, and sustainable agriculture. Previously, Christina was program manager, sustainability and innovation, global supply chain at Starbucks, and has also served as Director, Climate Resilient Water Systems at Environmental Defense Fund, where she worked at the intersection of water, agriculture, and climate, with a focus on supporting the successful implementation of California’s Sustainable Groundwater Management Act. Christina’s past research has focused on water resources management in stressed watersheds across the western U.S., Europe, and eastern Africa. Christina holds a PhD in Natural Resources from the University of Nebraska, Lincoln and a MBA from the University of California, Berkeley Haas School of Business.

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Lucia De Stefano, Universidad Complutense de Madrid & Water Observatory; Water Observatory, Botín Foundation

Dr. Lucia De Stefano is Associate Professor at Complutense University of Madrid (Spain) and Deputy Director of the Water Observatory of the Botín Foundation, a Spanish think-tank. She has worked as a consultant for USAID, The World Bank, University of Oxford and Oregon State University. She has been senior researcher at the Botín Foundation and postdoctoral researcher at Oregon State University, USA. Previously she worked as a policy officer for World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), and as a water management specialist in the private sector. Hydrogeologist by training, she holds an advanced degree in Geological Sciences from University of Pavia (Italy), and a PhD on water policy evaluation from Complutense University of Madrid. Her main fields of interest are multilevel water planning, drought management, groundwater governance, transboundary waters, and the assessment of good governance attributes.



Ariel Dinar, School of Public Policy, UC Riverside

Ariel is a Distinguished Professor of Environmental Economics and Policy at the School of Public Policy, University of California, Riverside. His work addresses various aspects of economic and strategic behavior associated with management of natural resources and the environment. Dr. Dinar received his PhD from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Since then he spent 15 years in the World Bank working on water and climate change economics and policy. In 2008, Dr. Dinar assumed a professorship at UCR. Dr. Dinar founded the Water Science and Policy Center, which he directed until 2014. Dr. Dinar is an International Fellow of the Center for Agricultural Economic Research of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel since November 2010; a Fulbright Senior Specialist since 2003; and was named a 2015 Fellow of the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.


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Qingyun Duan, College of Hydrology and Water Resources, Hohai University

Qingyun is currently a Chair Professor in the College of Hydrology & Water Resources at Hohai University in China. He received his PhD in hydrology from the University of Arizona in 1991. His research interests include hydrological modeling and forecasting, uncertainty quantification of hydrological and water resources systems and impacts of climate change on water resources. He has authored or co-authored more than 180 peer reviewed articles and edited 4 books in hydrology and water resources. Dr. Duan has been active in many international scientific activities, including serving as a member of the scientific steering committees of the Global Energy and Water cycle Exchanges (GEWEX) Project and the Hydrological Ensemble Prediction Experiment (HEPEX). He is a foundational leader of College of Fellows of American Geophysical Union. He was or is serving as an editor or editorial board member for numerous scientific journals, including Reviews of Geophysics, Bulleting of American Meteorological Society and Water Resources Research. Dr. Duan is a Fellow of American Geophysical Union and American Meteorological Society.



Alberto Garrido, Agriculture and Natural Resource Economics; CEIGRAM, Universidad Politecnia de Madrid Spain

Alberto is Professor of Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics and Vice-Rector for Quality and Efficiency at the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid. Has a Bachelor Degree and (with MSc recognition) in Agricultural Engineering (1989); a Masters in Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics from the University of California, Davis (1992) and a Doctoral Degree in Agricultural Economics from the UPM (1996). He has been the principal investigator of more than 70 research projects, including several international competitive ones for IFAD, European Commission, PepsiCo, European Parliament and various other public and private institutions. In 2005-2006, he was a visiting Scholar at University of California, Berkeley. Has worked professionally in Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Ethiopia, France, Nicaragua, Panama, Portugal, Suriname, The Netherlands, UK, US, and Vietnam. Presently, he serves in  the Board of Directors of IMDEA-Food, and in the Board of the Fundación General de la Universidad Politécnica de Madrid. In 2016, he was appointed Director  of  the Water Observatory of the Botin Foundation. Between 2007 and 2008, he  helped  create the Research Centre of Agricultural and Environmental Risks (CEIGRAM) a Research centre of Universidad Politécnica de Madrid (UPM), and appointed its Director between 2010 and 2014. Alberto has served on the Rosenberg Advisory Committee since 1996.


Andrea K. Gerlak, School of Geography & Development, University of Arizona

Andrea is a Professor in the School of Geography, Development and Environment and a Research Professor and Associate Director at the Udall Center for Studies in Public Policy at the University of Arizona. She has consulted on water governance and climate resilience efforts for UNESCO and the WMO. Gerlak has two decades of experience leading interdisciplinary environmental studies programs and university-community environmental partnerships. She is an author and coauthor of more than 100 publications. Her research agenda focuses on cooperation and conflict in water governance, including questions of equity and access, and institutional change, learning and adaptation.



Helen Ingram, Planning, Policy and Design, School of Social Ecology, UC Irvine

Helen is a Research Fellow at the Southwest Center at the University of Arizona and a Professor Emerita at the University of California at Irvine. She has written widely on water politics and policy, and in recent years has specialized on fairness and equity.


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Ben Maddox, Bank of America

Benjamin (Ben) J. Maddox is the Senior Vice President and Market Manager for Bank of America’s Central Valley Global Commercial (Middle Market) Banking Group.  In his position, Ben is responsible for the Bank’s commercial and agribusiness activities in the Central Valley (Stanislaus County through Kern County).  The Central Valley market includes agribusiness/food processing, manufacturing, beverage distribution and oil/gas industries.  Additionally, Ben serves as the Western Food, Agriculture & Wine Executive responsible for assisting with the overall growth of the Ag portfolio in the West while also working with trade organizations.


Ayman Rabi, Palestinian Hydrology Group

Dr. Ayman Rabi, the Executive Director of Palestinian Hydrology Group, Palestine. He holds MSc and PhD in Water Resources Engineering and has MBA in Business Administration. He has more than 30 years of water and environmental related experience. He participated in several local, regional and international EU funded water and environment related research, such as Med Water Policy, HUPHAT, WASAMED, EMPOWERS, MELIA, GABARDINE, SEARCH, RKNOW, etc. He is an author and co-author of more than 30 publications. He is a member of the advisory board of the Rosenberg International Forum on Water Policy and he is the national representative for Palestine within the International Association of Hydrological Sciences (IAHS).


Ex officio Members


Glenda Humiston, University of California, Agriculture and Natural Resources

As Vice President of UC Agriculture and Natural Resources, Dr. Glenda Humiston brings over 25 years of policy development and program implementation supporting sustaina­bil­ity, including time as a Peace Corps volunteer in Tunisia and as a consultant on environmental and agricultural issues throughout the western states. She served President Obama 2009-2015 as the California State Director for USDA Rural Development. From 1998-2001 she served President Clinton as Deputy Under Secretary for Natural Resources and Environment at USDA. Glenda managed the Sustainable Development Institute at the 2002 World Summit for Sustainable Development in South Africa and the 2006 World Water Forum in Mexico City. She earned her PhD in Environmental Science, Policy and Management from UC Berkeley; a Master’s in International Agricultural Development from UC Davis and a Bachelor’s degree in Animal Science from Colorado State University.



Erik Porse, University of California, Agriculture and Natural Resources, California Institute for Water Resources

Dr. Erik Porse is the Director of the California Institute for Water Resources and an Associate Cooperative Extension Specialist within the University of California Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources (UC ANR). Erik is an engineer, environmental scientist, and policy analyst who focuses on water and environmental management. Erik's work specializes in bringing together interdisciplinary teams to investigate complex environmental management questions. In California, he has contributed to state and regional studies for safe drinking water, efficient urban water use, sustainable groundwater management, water reuse, beneficial uses of stormwater, environmental finance, and water resource systems analysis. He earned a Ph.D. in Civil and Environmental Engineering (water resources) from UC Davis and a Master's degree in Public Policy (Science and Technology) from George Mason University. His professional experience includes international work and teaching in Mexico, Europe, Japan, and East Africa. He has authored over 50 reports and peer-reviewed articles.


Administrative Officer


Sherry Cooper, University of California, Agriculture and Natural Resources



Emeritus Advisory Committee 


Kimberly Beaird, Administrative Officer, University of California, Agriculture and Natural Resources, United States of America


Leith Boully, Murrumbidgee Irrigation, Australia


Julia Bucknall, The World Bank, United States of America


Fred Cannon, Keef, Bruyette and Woods, United States of America


Dan Dooley, New Current Water & Land; University of California, Agriculture and Natural Resources, United States of America


Don C. Erman, Wildlife, Fish & Conservation Biology, University of California, Davis, United States of America


Yuksel Inan, Bilkent University, Turkey (deceased)


John Letey (deceased)

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John Nilson, Saskatchewan Legislature, Canada

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Doug Parker, University of California, Agriculture and Natural Resources, California Institute for Water Resources


Paul J. Perkins, Australia


John J. Pigram, Australia (deceased)

  Robert A. Pietrowsky, United States of America


Mordechai Shechter, Israel


Sekou Toure, Republic of Cote D' Ivoire


Henry J. Vaux, Jr., Emeritus Chair, Rosenberg International Forum on Water Policy and Emeritus Professor, Resource Economics, UC Berkeley, United States of America


Jun Xia, Chinese Academy of Sciences; Research Institute for Water Security, China



 Moneef Zou'bi, Islamic World Academy, Jordan