Stefano Galelli

Stefano Galelli

Associate Professor
Civil and Environmental Engineering
Hollister Hall, Room 213


Dr. Stefano Galelli is a tenured Associate Professor in the School of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Cornell University, where he leads the Critical Infrastructure Systems Lab. His career has spanned across Europe, Asia, and North America. A graduate of Politecnico di Milano, Italy, where he earned a B.Sc. and M.Sc. in Environmental Engineering (2004, 2007) and a Ph.D. in Information and Communication Technology (2011), it was eventually overseas in Singapore where he first established his career. There, he worked as a Post Doctoral Research Fellow at the National University of Singapore (2011-2013), and then later, as a faculty member of the Singapore University of Technology and Design (2013-2023). After more than a decade in Asia, Dr. Galelli’s career brought him to North America. In addition to his appointment at Cornell, he is an Adjunct Research Scientist at the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, Columbia University. 

Research Interests

Dr. Galelli’s research interests lie on the interactions between critical infrastructure systems and the natural environment. In particular, Dr. Galelli is interested in (1) characterizing how hydro-climatic variability cascades across interconnected water-energy infrastructures and (2) providing adaptive, robust, and scalable management solutions that balance reliability, resilience, and sustainability. To reach this goal, his lab advances and combines elements of process-based modelling, climatology, statistical learning, control theory, and optimization. More details can be found on the Critical Infrastructure Systems Lab website linked below.

Teaching Interests

Over the past decade, Dr. Galelli has taught foundational courses (calculus, linear algebra, statistics and probability) as well as advanced courses in the areas of data analytics and optimization. His teaching portfolio also includes courses on water and energy management. At Cornell, he is further expanding his portfolio to include new courses on data-driven control of coupled-human natural systems and risk management for interconnected systems.

Service Interests

Dr. Galelli has been an active member of the American Geophysical Union (AGU), the European Geosciences Union (EGU), and the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE). He served as an Associate Editor (2015-2020) and Section Editor (2020-2023) for the ASCE Journal of Water Resources Planning and Management, and has been serving on the editorial board of Environmental Modelling & Software since 2014. Dr. Galelli is now an Associate Editor in AGU’s Earth’s Future transdisciplinary Gold Open Access journal and lead Guest Editor for Hydrology and Earth System Sciences. His service has been recognised by multiple awards.

Selected Publications

  • Galelli, S., Dang, T.D., Ng, J.Y., Chowdhury, K., Arias, M.E. (2022) Opportunities to curb hydrological alterations via dam re-operation in the Mekong, Nature Sustainability, 5, 1058–1069.
  • Siala, K., Chowdhury, K., Dang, T.D., Galelli, S. (2021) Solar energy and regional coordination as a feasible alternative to large hydropower in Southeast Asia. Nature Communications, 12, 4159.
  • Chowdhury, K., Dang, T.D., Nguyen, H.T.T., Koh, R., Galelli, S. (2021) The Greater Mekong’s climate-water-energy nexus: how ENSO-triggered regional droughts affect power supply and CO2 emissions. Earth’s Future, 9(3), e2020EF001814.
  • Nguyen, H.T.T., Turner, S.W.D., Buckley, B., Galelli, S. (2020) Coherent streamflow variability in Monsoon Asia over the past eight centuries—links to oceanic drivers. Water Resources Research, 56, e2020WR027883.
  • Dang, T.D., Chowdhury, K., Galelli, S. (2020) On the representation of water reservoir storage and operations in large-scale hydrological models: implications on model parameterization and climate change impact assessments. Hydrology and Earth System Sciences, 24, 397–416.

Selected Awards and Honors

Dr. Galelli has been awarded the Early Career Research Excellence Award (2014) by the International Environmental Modeling & Software Society and the 2017 SUTD Excellence in Research Award. His work has been featured and awarded by multiple international journals, including Nature Sustainability (2022), Earth’s Future (2021), the Journal of Water Resources Planning and Management (2021, 2020, 2019), and Hydrology and Earth System Sciences (2017).


  • Ph.D. in Information and Communication Technology, Feb. 2011, Politecnico di Milano, Milan, Italy
  • M.Sc. in Environmental and Land Planning Engineering, Apr. 2007, Politecnico di Milano, Milan, Italy
  • B.Sc. in Environmental and Land Planning Engineering, Jul. 2004, Politecnico di Milano, Milan, Italy