Peter S. Eagleson, Edward K. Turner Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, emeritus, has been awarded the $150,000 Stockholm Water Prize for his achievements in hydrology.
Professor Eagleson's work seeks fundamental understanding of the processes that control the various elements of the hydrologic cycle, globally and locally. His 1970 textbook, Dynamic Hydrology, redefined the field in quantitative terms and emphasized the link between land surface hydrologic processes and the atmosphere. He is "to be commended for single-handedly elevating hydrology to the level of a major scholarly science," said Alf-Goran Dahlberg, chairman of the Stockholm Water Prize nominating committee.
In his recent work in ecohydrology, Professor Eagleson developed a theory of soil/plant/atmosphere interactions. Based on this theory, he formulated the optimal balance between vegetation and its physical/climatic environment and made predictions about the locations and roles of particular types of vegetation around the globe.
Professor Eagleson chaired the US National Research Council Panel, "Opportunities in Hydrology." The group's report is considered the blueprint of education and research in hydrology around the world.
The Stockholm Water Prize is an international environmental award given annually in recognition of outstanding contributions in the field of water conservation. The prize will be presented by King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden on August 14.
A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on April 3, 1997.