CAHNR Dean Indrajeet Chaubey Wins John Deere Gold Medal

This medal recognizes lifetime achievement in agricultural engineering that produces new concepts, products, art, or science.

Indrajeet Chaubey on Jan. 23, 2020. (Peter Morenus/UConn Photo)

Dean and director of the College of Agriculture, Health and Natural Resources (CAHNR) Indrajeet Chaubey has received the John Deere Gold Medal from the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers.

This medal recognizes lifetime achievement in agricultural engineering that produces new concepts, products, art, or science.

“I am honored to receive this award from the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers and the John Deere Foundation,” says Chaubey. “Being recognized by this organization of my peers for my contributions to our field is very humbling.”

Chaubey has established a distinguished career in water quality and watershed management research. He is an internationally recognized leader in quantifying the impacts of land use, agricultural intensification, and urbanization on hydrology and water quality. His research and educational efforts have focused on nonpoint source pollution, which is caused when pollutants are carried into the surface and ground waters from rain, melting snow, or other forms of precipitation. Nonpoint source pollution is the greatest pollution threat to water bodies in the U.S. and globally. Chaubey’s work has increased knowledge about the environmental consequences caused by nonpoint source pollution from mixed land use and agricultural watersheds.

Chaubey has developed biophysical models and decision support tools for improving watershed management. His algorithms have benefitted thousands of users globally allowing stakeholders to run through “what-if” scenarios using scientific evidence. Chaubey’s work has helped communities improve their water quality and reduce losses caused by nonpoint source pollution. One of Chaubey’s most impactful projects improved the efficiency by which the Environmental Protection Agency develops total maximum daily loads, measurements that indicate how much of a given pollutant can enter a waterbody so that it will still meet water quality standards.

Outside the U.S., Chaubey’s work has helped countries including China, Colombia, India, Mexico, and Peru develop strategies to manage their limited water supply and improve crop production. These efforts highlight Chaubey’s interdisciplinary research, which balances innovative engineering solutions with economic feasibility to increase their utilization.

Throughout his career, Chaubey has received more than $32 million in funding to support his research program. He has published nearly 500 scientific papers including 152 peer-reviewed publications. Chaubey is one of the most-cited scientists in his field according to Google Scholar with more than 8,600 citations.

In his leadership position at CAHNR, Chaubey guides the College and the UConn Extension program to support faculty and student research, life-transformative education, and community outreach. To date, Chaubey has supported the work of 31 graduate students and 10 post-doctoral researchers.

“I am so thrilled to see Dean Chaubey receive this recognition. He’s an exceptional scholar, as well as a thoughtful and strategic leader of CAHNR. I offer my heartiest congratulations on this well-deserved honor,” says Carl Lejuez, provost and executive vice president for academic affairs.

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