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Assistant Professor, Applied Hydrology and Water Resources

Office: Room 324, Department of Geological Sciences
Phone: (919)-966-4553


B.S. Rice University, 2011

Ph.D. Rice University, 2016

Research Webpage 

Research Interests

Research in my lab focuses on understanding dynamic changes in watershed hydrology and their influences on flood hazards under rapidly changing anthropogenic conditions. We also work on topics related to risk quantification, visualization, and communication. Much of our research is computational in nature, utilizing watershed-scale hydrologic and hydraulic models, as well as geographic information systems (GIS) and spatial analytical and statistical tools. Current projects in my lab aim to address three primary questions:

    • How are changes in development patterns and anthropogenic warming impacting flood risks in urban and coastal communities?
    • How can physical, analytical and statistical models be leveraged to better predict flood hazards and risks across multiple scales?
    • How can current and future flood risks be managed through combinations of structural and non-structural solutions?

Selected Recent Publications

Juan, A., Gori, A.*, Sebastian, A. (2020) Comparing floodplain evolution in channelized and unchannelized urban watersheds in Houston, Texas. Journal of Flood Risk Management, doi: 10.1111/jfr3.12604.

Sebastian, A., Gori, A.*, Blessing, R., van der Wiel, K., Bass, B. (2019) Disentangling the relative impacts of human and environmental change on catchment response during Hurricane HarveyEnvironmental Research Letters, doi:10.1088/1748-9326/ab5234.

Mobley, W.+, Sebastian, A.+, Highfield, W.E., Brody, S.D. (2019) Estimating Flood Extent during Hurricane Harvey using Maximum Entropy in a Hazard Distribution ModelJournal of Flood Risk Management, doi: 10.1111/jfr3.12549. +these authors contributed equally to this work

Couasnon, A.A.*, Sebastian,  A., Morales-N´apoles, O. (2018) A copula-based approach for modeling stochastic boundary conditions in a coastal catchment: An application to the Houston Ship Channel, TexasWater (Special Issue: Copulas in Hydrology), 10(9), 1190-1209. doi: 10.3390/w10091190.

Lendering, K.T.+, Sebastian, A.+, Jonkman, S.N., Kok, M. (2018). Guidelines for assessing the performance of flood adaptation innovations within a risk-based frameworkJournal of Flood Risk Management, doi: 10.1111/jfr3.12485. +these authors contributed equally to this work

Paprotny, D., Sebastian, A., Morales-N´apoles, O., Jonkman, S.N. (2018). Trends in European flood losses over the past 150 yearsNature Communications, doi: 10.1038/s41467-018-04253-1.

Blessing, R., Sebastian, A., Brody, S.D. (2018). Flood Risk Delineation in the U.S.: How much loss are we capturing? ASCE Natural Hazards Review, doi: 10.1061/(ASCE)NH.1527-6996.0000242.

Van Oldenborgh, G.J., Van der Wiel, K., Sebastian, A., Singh, R., Arrighi, J., Otto, F., Haustein, K., Li, S., Vecchi, G., Cullen, H. (2017). Attribution of the extreme rainfall from Hurricane Harvey, August 2017Environmental Research Letters, doi: 10.1088/1748-9326/aa9ef2.

Sebastian, A., Dupuits, E.J.C., Morales-Napoles, O. (2017).  Applying a Bayesian Network based on Gaussian Copulas to Model the Hydraulic Boundary Conditions for Hurricane Flood Risk Analysis in a Coastal WatershedCoastal Engineering, doi: 10.1016/j.coastaleng.2017.03.008.