Orn-uma Polpanich returned to work at SEI Asia office in Bangkok in March 2018 after pursuing a doctoral study at Uppsala University, Sweden between 2014 and 2018. Orn-uma works part-time as a Research Fellow while working on her final thesis, soon to be defended. Her main research interests centre around land and water issues, including the interplay between water and people (socio-hydrology), land-use changes and hydrological dynamics, agricultural water management and integrated approaches with the use of participatory modeling.
Her recent work has included using SEI’s Water Evaluation And Planning (WEAP) model and Robust Decision Support System (RDS) to create an analytical platform for use in multi-party discussions over water resources issues, to assess multi-dimensional forces effecting water systems, and to close the gap in transboundary water cooperation and management of data sharing in the Mekong Region. Past research has covered exploring water resources in Thailand’s Northeastern region, urban water metabolism, agricultural transformation, ecosystem services assessment, the water-energy-food nexus, application of remote sensing and geoinformatics tools in managing natural disasters and land, water and forest resources in Southeast Asia, and reforestation extension in NortheasternThailand.
Prior to joining SEI, Orn-uma worked as a Research Associate for several institutes, including the Geoinformatics Center of the Asian Institute of Technology in Thailand, Institute of Land Use Economics in the Tropics and Subtropics of Universität Hohenheim in Germany, Southeast Asia Regional Office of International Water Management Institute in Thailand and Phase II of the Reforestation and Extension Project in the Northeast of Thailand. Much of her work has focused on land, water and forest management issues in Southeast Asia Region.
Orn-uma holds degrees in international land and water management (irrigation and water management) from Wageningen University, The Netherlands, and sustainable land use planning and natural resources management from Kasetsart University, Thailand.