About Me

Michael Koohafkan

I am a PhD student in the Hydrologic Sciences Graduate Group at University of California Davis and a Water Resources Engineer at the California Department of Water Resources. My doctoral research is focused on using graph theory to represent and analyze spatio-temporal interactions between landscape features. I apply a novel graph-theoretic approach to studying the morphodynamics of emergent sandbars in the Missouri River and to assess habitat patch evolution in the Russian River Estuary. I started the doctoral program in late 2014 following completion of a Masters of Science in Environmental Engineering at University of California Berkeley, where I studied the role of fog in the hydrology of coastal watersheds in California. I have also collaborated with NOAA’s Habitat Blueprint to explore hydrologic controls on salmonid habitat quality in the Russian River estuary, and with the American Bird Conservancy on the development of an agent-based model of Interior Least Tern breeding behavior.


Gibson, S., Osorio, A., Creech, C., Amorim, R., Dircksen, M., Dahl, T., Koohafkan, M. 2019. “Two pool-to-pool spacing periods on large sand-bed rivers: Mega-pools on the Madeira and Mississippi”. Geomorphology, 328:196-210.

Koohafkan, M.C. and S. Gibson. 2018. “Geomorphic trajectory and landform analysis using graph theory: A panel data approach to quantitative geomorphology.” Progress in Physical Geography, 42(6):679-696. (link)

Gerlein-Safdi, C., Koohafkan, M.C., Chung, M., Rockwell, F.E., Thompson, S., and K.K. Caylor. 2018. “Dew deposition suppresses transpiration and carbon uptake in leaves”. Agricultural and Forest Meteorology, 259(15):305-316.

Koohafkan, M.C. and B.A. Younis. 2015. “Open-Channel Computation with R.” The R Journal, 7(2):249-262. (link)

Lott, C.A., S.F. Railsback, C.F. Sheppard, and M.C. Koohafkan. 2013. “Developing and Testing TernCOLONY 1.0: An Individual-based Model of Least Tern Reproduction.” ERDC/EL CR-13-2, U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center, Vicksburg, MS. Dated June 2013, 192 pp.

Koohafkan, M.C., Thompson, S.E., Leonardson, R., and Dufour, A. (2013), Broad-spectrum monitoring strategies for predicting occult precipitation contribution to water balance in a coastal watershed in California: Ground-truthing, areal monitoring and isotopic analysis of fog in the San Francisco Bay region, Abstract A41E-0102 presented at 2013 Fall Meeting, AGU, San Francisco, Calif., 9-13 Dec.

Koohafkan, M.C., Thompson, S.E. and Hamilton, M.P. (2012), Predicting Potential Evaporation in Topographically Complex Terrain, Abstract H43C-1347 presented at 2012 Fall Meeting, AGU, San Francisco, Calif., 3-7 Dec.