UW News

Robert Naiman

Professor emeritus, School of Aquatic & Fishery Sciences

Flooding and landslides

Expertise: River ecology, watershed management, river restoration

Robert’s career highlights include being a research scientist and director of the Matamek Research Program of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, director of the Center for Streamside Studies at the University of Washington, a visiting scientist on numerous occasions with the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (Toulouse, France), a visiting professor at the University of the Witwatersrand (Johannesburg, South Africa), and a professor at the Centre of Excellence in Natural Resource Management at the University of Western Australia. His research explored the structure and dynamics of riverine ecosystems — including riparian vegetation, and the role of large animals in influencing ecosystem dynamics. These activities laid the foundation for ~11 books on aquatic ecology and watershed management and produced 230+ journal articles. Robert is an ISI Highly Cited Researcher and former UNESCO Chair in Sustainable Rivers. He has chaired several national and international committees on water issues, have participated on advisory panels for the U.S. National Science Foundation, chaired UNESCO committees, consulted for government research organizations in France and South Africa, and advised conservation organizations as well as private foundations. In 2008, Robert was awarded the title of Doctor Honoris Causa by the Université Paul Sabatier (Toulouse, France), in 2012 received the Eminent Scientist award from the Ecological Society of America, and in 2013 presented the E. Baldi memorial lecture to the International Society of Limnology. Until recently, he chaired the Independent Scientific Advisory Board for the restoration and management of the Columbia River (USA) — the largest river restoration program in North America; he continues as a member of the Scientific Review Panel.