Dr. Tara Troy

Dr. Tara  Troy
Associate Professor
Civil Engineering
Office: EOW 341

PhD (Princeton)

Area of expertise

Sustainable water resources, water use and infrastructure impacts on hydrologic processes, hydrologic impacts of climate change, flood processes


I am a hydrologist interested in how climate and humans alter hydrologic processes and what the implications of these alterations are for sustainable water resources. To do this, I use physically-based hydrologic models, stochastic modeling, and data analysis, considering rivers of varying sizes, from a small stream to the Mississippi River. This research draws upon disciplinary knowledge in hydrology coupled with water systems and stormwater management from civil engineering and data analysis techniques from data science. Prior to joining UVic, I bounced around the northeastern US as a practicing engineer, graduate student, postdoctoral researcher, and my first faculty position at Lehigh University. 

  • See my group website  for ongoing research projects.
  • Google scholar has an up-to-date list of publications and their citations.
  • I occasionally tweet articles about water, climate, and the built environment. 


Hydrologic alteration due to water use and the built environment

Humans modify hydrologic processes in myriad ways, both deliberately and inadvertently. Ongoing research focuses on quantifying the impact of the built environment on hydrologic processes, and how far downstream the impacts propagate through a river network. To do this, we use physically-based numerical models, stochastic simulation, and data analysis of observations. The water-food-energy nexus is of particularly interest in terms of research, with ongoing projects looking at how this nexus responds to shocks. 

The impacts of climate change on the water cycle

Climate change represents a significant threat to water resources in many parts of the world. Past research has identified the physical processes leading to increasing streamflow in northern Eurasia and has projected changes to the snowpack and streamflow in the northeastern US. Ongoing work is focused on how climate change will impact irrigation demands and water resources sustainability. 

Understanding flood processes and quantifying flood risk

River flooding is a costly natural hazard, and yet the different flood mechanisms that lead to flooding in a certain hydroclimatic region are often poorly characterized. Ongoing research looks at identifying the relative importance of different causal factors to better understand flood processes. We then use these factors to better estimate the likelihood of flooding and project potential changes in flood risk under climate change.