Professor Okke Batelaan

Strategic Professorship

College of Science and Engineering

place Information, Science & Technology (319)
GPO Box 2100, Adelaide 5001, South Australia

Okke Batelaan is Strategic Professor in Hydro(geo)logy at Flinders University since 2012. He was Dean of the School of the Environment at Flinders from 2015-2017. Formerly he was for more than 20 years faculty member at the Free University Brussels and the KU Leuven, Belgium. Professor Batelaan has a broad experience in teaching groundwater hydrology, groundwater modelling, GIS and remote sensing for hydrological applications. He has extensive research experience and a publication record in shallow groundwater hydrology and modeling, recharge-discharge estimation and modeling, urban hydrology and distributed modelling, ecohydrology and impacts of landuse and climate change on groundwater systems. He coordinated and participated in a large number of projects in Europe, Africa, South America, Asia and Australia. He has lead a large project on the groundwater resources of the Adelaide plains and is currently involved in a project in the Northern Adelaide Plains, funded by the Goyder Institute. He is chief investigator in the ARC-Linkage project 'Cross-cultural management of freshwater on resource-constrained islands', which focusses on the water resources of Millingimbi island, NT. He is also partner in the ACIAR funded project 'Integrated water, soil and nutrient management for sustainable farming systems in South Central Coastal Vietnam and Australia'. He is editor-in-chief of Journal of Hydrology: Regional Studies and associate editor of Journal of Hydrology.

PhD in Engineering (Free University Brussels); MSc Hydrogeology (Free University Amsterdam)
Honours, awards and grants
  • Honorable medal of the Warsaw University of Life Sciences (2010)
  • (Co-)Promotor of more than 100 research and educational national and international projects
  • Research leader for Goyder Institute for Water Research funded project: 'Assessment of Adelaide Plains Groundwater Resources'. See interview: ABC TV - Groundwater study with Professor Okke Batelaan
Research interests

Hydrogeology; Regional groundwater modelling; Recharge-discharge estimation; Groundwater-surface water interaction, among other involvement in HYPOTRAIN; Distributed hydrological modelling; GIS and remote sensing for hydrological modelling; ecohydrology; scientific and educational cooperation.

Teaching interests

I am coordinator of the Master of Science Water Resources Management, see for details: Water Resources Management postgraduate program

Topic coordinator
ENVS9722 Integrated Water Management
Topic lecturer
ENVS2761 Hydrology
ENVS8771 Ecohydrology
Supervisory interests
Catchment hydrology
Groundwater dependent ecosystems
Groundwater hydrology
Groundwater modelling
Groundwater rechange
Groundwater/surface water interaction
History, science
Remote sensing
Higher degree by research supervision
Principal supervisor: Integrated Water Resources Management for Transboundary Catchments in Indonesia: A Case Study of Krueng Aceh Catchment, Aceh Province (1), Drought, Drought Vulnerability and Adaptation Policy in Cambodia with Reference to the Farming Sector (1), Groundwater-Surface Water Interaction in Sandy Soil Provinces of Southern Central Coast, Vietnam (1), Groundwater Hydrology (1)
Associate supervisor: Hydrology (1)
Principal supervisor: Spatial and temporal estimation of groundwater recharge: Identifying controlling factors and impact assessment (Vrije Universiteit Brussel) (1), Identifying hydrological processes controlling low flow and groundwater-surface water interaction in an Andean catchment in Ecuador (Vrije Universiteit Brussel) (1), Towards a sustainable aquacultural development in Mekong Delta Water resource management using GIS, remote sensing and modeling (Vrije Universiteit Brussel) (1), Analysis of feed-backs between land function dynamics and the hydrological cycle (Vrije Universiteit Brussel) (1), Monitoring evapotranspiration at continental scale: enhanced contributionfrom geostationary satellites (Vrije Universiteit Brussel) (1), Estimation of water quality parameters with high spectral resolution optical remote sensing data (Vrije Universiteit Brussel) (1), Variability of groundwater flow as a factor of mire ecohydrological evolution – Example of Czerwone Bagno (Vrije Universiteit Brussel - University of Life Sciences, Warsaw, Poland) (1), Improving spatiotemporal urban runoff estimation using earth observation based approaches (Vrije Universiteit Brussel) (1), Calibration of hydraulic conductivities in groundwater flow models using the Double Constraint Method and the Kalman Filter (Vrije Universiteit Brussel) (1), Detailed groundwater recharge estimation for urban environments: a remote sensing supported procedure for groundwater risk management (Vrije Universiteit Brussel) (1), Spatio-temporal prediction of land subsidence using GIS-based 3D geological, geotechnical and groundwater flow models in Hanoi city (Vietnam) (Vrije Universiteit Brussel) (1), Basin scale water balance modelling for variable hydrological regimes and temporal scales (Vrije Universiteit Brussel) (1), Development of a flexible process-based spatially-distributed hydrological model for urban catchments (Vrije Universiteit Brussel) (1), Groundwater/hydrology (MSc) (143), Hydrological impact analysis of land-use and climate change (Vrije Universiteit Brussel) (1), Methodology for estimation of the change in the reserve of the Upper Berg catchment, Western Cape, South Africa (Vrije Universiteit Brussel) (1), Runoff modeling using GIS. Application in torrential basins in the Apuseni Mountains (Vrije Universiteit Brussel and Babeş-Bolyai University Cluj-Napoca, Romania) (1), Thermal subpixel estimation in urban areas with spaceborne remote sensing (Vrije Universiteit Brussel) (1), Hydrological impacts on the carbon dynamics of large tropical river systems (KU Leuven) (1), Aquifer thermal energy storage under different hydrochemical and hydrogeological conditions (KU Leuven) (1), Controlling factors of dissolved Silicon in upstream catchments with different land uses (KU Leuven) (1), multi-scale aquifer characterization. From outcrop analogue, direct-push and borehole investigations towards improved groundwater flow models (KU Leuven) (1), Quantifying groundwater-surface water interaction by using heat as a natural tracer (Vrije Universiteit Brussel) (1)
Associate supervisor: Groundwater protection zoning (University of the Western Cape, Cape Town) (1), Mapping impervious surface cover from hyperspectral imagery using per-pixel and sub-pixel classification approaches (Vrije Universiteit Brussel) (1), Earth observation for quantifying eco-hydrological fluxes and inter-relations: A regional case – The Konya Closed Basin, Turkey, International Institute for Geo-information Science and Earth Observation (ITC), The Netherlands (1), Water Flow and Contaminant Transformation in the Hyporheic Zone of Lowland Rivers (University Ghent, Belgium) (1)
Expert for media contact
Available for contact via
Or contact the media team
+61 8 82012092
0427 398 713
Media expertise
  • Groundwater
Further information

See for complete list of publications: