Research Staff

Portrait of man in suit Bassel Daher, M.SE. (Google Scholar)
Bassel Daher is a Research Associate at Texas A&M University’s Water-Energy-Food Nexus Research Group (since 2014), and is pursuing his PhD in Water Management and Hydrologic Sciences at Texas A&M (2018). Daher’s work focuses on policy-oriented research in natural resource management, environmental sustainability, and resource security. He is particularly interested in developing Water-Energy-Food Nexus solutions that respond to biophysical, socioeconomic, governance, and financing constraints, at multiple scales, in the context of the Sustainable Development Goals. Daher also has expertise in water-energy-food nexus analytics and development of resources allocation assessment tools. Specifically, Bassel’s PhD research focuses on three areas: 1) spatial and temporal modeling of trade-offs between competing, resource demanding, sectors, and quantifying the risks associated with “business-as-usual” growth trends; 2) modeling stakeholder behavior, interaction, interests, power dynamics, goals and values, and he uses game theory as a tool for assessing the potential and feasibility of different case-specific resource allocation problems; and 3) He is also interested in examining different governance structures and financing mechanisms that would be suitable for mobilizing “resource nexus solutions” at different scales. Recently selected to membership in the Water-Energy-Food Nexus Knowledge Action Network for Future Earth, and to the Water Youth Network (WYN), Bassel is one of 8 young water professionals globally invited to serve on the Young Scientific Committee for the 2016 Stockholm World Water Week. Daher’s professional contributions include multiple chapters of the UN Global Sustainable Development Report, co-authoring a report on “Renewable Energy and the Water, Energy, and Food Nexus” for the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), multiple journal articles, book chapters, and policy briefs related to the interconnected water-energy-food securities and nexus assessment tools, including with Chatham House and Water International. Bassel currently serves as the President of the Biological and Agricultural Engineering Graduate Student Association and is a member of the Legislative Committee of the Graduate and Professional Student Association at Texas A&M. Daher holds a B.Sc. in Civil and Environmental Engineering from the American University of Beirut (2010), and an MSE (2012) from Purdue University, Biological and Agricultural Engineering-Multi-Scale Hydrology Group. He was a Research Associate (2012-2014) with the Qatar Environment and Energy Research Institute, Doha. While pursuing his MSE at Purdue, Bassel developed a scenario-based framework for integrative planning and national resource allocation, based upon which, he designed a tool (WEF Nexus Tool, wefnexustool.org) that allows scientists and policy makers to create and assess scenarios for national resource allocation strategies. After leaving Purdue, Daher joined Qatar Foundation where he used the established framework to help quantify the resources needed for possible food self-sufficiency goals in Qatar, and provided an understanding of the constraints that might surface, particularly in extremely arid areas.
Rami Rami Jabakhanji, Ph.D. (Google Scholar)
Rami is a Research Associate at Texas A&M University Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering (BAEN). His current research focus is on the development of a numerical model that integrates a peridynamic formulation of moisture flow based on the pedostructure concept, with a peridynamic mechanical model for soil deformation and cracking. The model will allow researchers to analyze the interactions between soil desiccation cracks and water and contaminants’ infiltration and flow. Understanding these interactions has many potential applications in water resources, environmental engineering, agriculture and geotechnical engineering, including: more efficient irrigation planning, more accurate dosing of applied nutrients, more accurate evaluation of the movement of pesticides and pollutants in the soil and their risk to ground water contamination, and an improved failure assessment of slope stability and clay barriers. Rami studied Civil Engineering at the American University of Beirut and earned his PhD in multi-scale hydrology at from Purdue University, Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering (2013).

 

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