Elius Etienne, PhD

Research Scientist | Software Engineer | Water Resources Engineer


Dr. Etienne has a diversified background and professional experience. He has worked in the hydrology/water resources fields assessing the conditions of water and wastewater infrastructures in many areas of New York City. He has worked as a Full Stack Developer Consultant and led the development of many web applications. He is also experienced in sensors deployments and the collection of environmental data through his entrepreneurial activities. Earlier in his career his work addressed hydro-climatic extremes (droughts, floods), GIS analyses, data mining, statistical modeling, sustainability, water management, and construction of civil structures. During his time as a researcher at CUNY, he employed machine learning techniques to develop water risk metrics for the United States and created web-based tools to demonstrate their applications. He also served as a Resident Engineer supervising various civil engineering works (construction of reservoirs, single family houses, and others).


Dr. Etienne obtained his Ph.D. in Water Resources Engineering from the Grove School of Engineering of CUNY - City College. Before that, he obtained his Master of Science from CUNY - City College in Urban Sustainability. His bachelor degree in Rural Engineering regrouped courses from different engineering fields notably, Water Resources, Environmental and Structural engineering.


  • Etienne, Elius. "Irrigation system." U.S. Patent Application No. 16/381,262.

  • Etienne, Elius. "Drought index system." U.S. Patent Application No. 16/171,962.


  • Etienne, E., Devineni, N., Khanbilvardi, R., Lall, U., (2016), Development of a Demand Sensitive Drought Index and its Application for Agriculture over the Conterminous United States. Journal of Hydrology, 534, 219–229. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jhydrol.2015.12.060

  • Devineni, N., Lall, U., Etienne, E., Shi, D., and Xi, C., (2015), America's water risk: Current demand and climate variability. Geophys. Res. Lett., 42, 2285–2293. doi: 10.1002/2015GL063487

  • Ho, M., V. Parthasarathy, E. Etienne, T. A. Russo, N. Devineni, and U. Lall (2016), America's water: Agricultural water demands and the response of groundwater, Geophys. Res. Lett., 43, 7546–7555, doi:10.1002/2016GL069797

  • Etienne, E., and Piasecki, M., (2014), Development Of A Repository For Hydrologic Model Uncertainty Data, https://academicworks.cuny.edu/cc_conf_hic/377/.



  • Community and Societal Engagement - NOAA-CREST (Center for Earth System Sciences and Remote Sensing Technologies) - 2017: In recognination of societal impacts of water risks assessment decision support tools.

  • First place oral presentation - NOAA Educational Partnership Program - 2016: Award for outstanding presentation

  • Master’s Degree Fellowship - City University of New York - 2010: Fellowship awarded for outstanding academic performance.

  • Master’s Degree Fellowship - Canadian Francophonie Scholarship Program - 2010: Fellowship awarded for outstanding academic performance.