Se-Yeun Lee , Ph.D.

Research Scientist Climate Impacts Group

Se-Yeun's professional mission is to use interdisciplinary research and hydrologic modeling to improve our understanding of the complex interactions between climate and hydrology. Working directly with water managers and decision-makers, Se-Yeun strives to conduct and apply research that will help build a more climate-resilient future for our region.

Areas of Expertise

Hydrologic Modeling Stream Temperature Water Resources Systems Ecosystems


Se-Yeun Lee is a research scientist at the UW Climate Impacts Group. Dr. Lee is involved in interdisciplinary research focusing on understanding and modeling the complex interactions between climate, hydrology and natural resource management. She developed optimized dam operations to increase summer instream flow without increasing flood risk under climate change. Recently she has been working on understanding the impacts of climate change on the distribution and pattern of cold-water patches in freshwater systems. Se-Yeun has a Ph.D. in Civil and Environmental Engineering from the University of Washington.

Research Interests

  • Hydrology Impacts of Climate Change on Hydropower, Water Resources Management, Water Temperature and Ecosystems
  • Integrated Hydrological and Water Resources Modeling
  • Climate Change Planning and Adaptation

Select Current Projects

  • Impacts of Climate Change on Flooding in King County Rivers
  • Incorporating Stream Temperature Variability in Vulnerability Assessments
  • Impacts of Climate Change on Streamflow, Stream Temperature and Sediments in the Glaciated Sauk River Basin
  • Climate Vulnerability Assessment for Meadows, Phase 1: Methods Development Pilot Project
  • Using Data and Models to Assess Impacts and Adapt to Climate Change Focus: Current and Future Stream Temperatures

Recent Publications

Fullerton, A.H., C.E. Torgersen, J.J. Lawler, E.A. Steel, J.L. Ebersole and S.Y. Lee, 2017. Longitudinal Thermal Heterogeneity in Rivers and Refugia for Coldwater Species: Effects of Scale and Climate Change. Aquatic Sciences. Accepted.

Lee, S.Y., A.F. Hamlet, and E. Grossman, 2016.  Impacts of Climate Change on Regulated Streamflow, Flood Control, Hydropower Production, and Sediment Discharge in the Skagit River Basin. Northwest Science 90(1) 23-43.

Lee, S.Y., M. Ryan, A.F. Hamlet, W. Palen, J.J. Lawler, and M. Halabisky, 2015. Projecting the Hydrologic Impacts of Climate Change on Montane Wetlands. PLosOne, 10(9):e0136385.

Hamman, J., A.F. Hamlet, S.Y. Lee, R. Fuller and E.F. Grossman, 2016. Combined Effects of Projected Sea Level Rise, Storm Surge, and Peak River Flows on Water Levels in the Skagit River Floodplain. Northwest Science 90(1):57-78.

Vano, J., S.Y. Lee and A.F. Hamlet, 2016. Chapter 112. Columbia River Basin Hydrology, In V.T. Chow (Eds.), Handbook of Applied Hydrology, Second Edition, McGraw Hill Education. ISBN 978-0-07-183509-1