Chansheng He

Photo of Chansheng He
Chansheng He
Professor and Distinguished Faculty Scholar
(269) 387-3425
(269) 387-3442
3234 Wood Hall, Mail Stop 5424
Mailing address: 
Department of Geography, Environment, and Tourism
Western Michigan University
1903 W Michigan Ave
Kalamazoo MI 49008-5424 USA
  • Ph.D., Resource Development, Michigan State University, 1992
  • M.S., Agricultural Zoning and Natural Resources Management, Northwestern Agricultural University, 1985
  • B.S., Agronomy, Northwestern Agricultural University, 1982
  • Distinguished Fulbright-University of Leeds Scholar Award
  • American Association of Geographers (AAG) Water Resources Specialty Group Distinguished Career Award in Water Resources
  • Fellow, American Association of Geographers (AAG)
  • Fellow, American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)
  • Fulbright Specialists Awards
  • 2015 Western Michigan University Distinguished Faculty Scholar
  • National Research Council / NOAA Senior Research Associateship Award 2001-02
  • Outstanding Overseas Scholar, The Chinese Academy of Sciences, 2005
  • Chair, AAG (Association of American Geographers) Water Resources Specialty Group, 2008-10
  • Member, Steering Committee of Commission for Water Sustainability, International Geographical Union (IGU), 2011+
Teaching interests: 
  • Watershed hydrology
  • Nonpoint source pollution modeling
  • Ecosystem indicators
  • Geographic information systems and remote sensing applications
Research interests: 
  • How much freshwater is available to support the multiple demands for water for domestic supplies, industrial development, agricultural irrigation and hydropower generation while satisfying the needs for ecosystem maintenance?
  • How does land use/cover change resulting from human- environmental interactions affect the watershed hydrologic processes over space and time?
  • How can hydrologic models and spatial technologies be incorporated in planning processes to support watershed management and ecosystem protection?

Dr. Chansheng He is a professor of geography, and a Distinguished Faculty Scholar at Western Michigan University. He has received a number of awards including, fellow of American Association of Geographers (AAG), fellow of American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), AAG Water Resources Speciality Group Distinguished Career Award in Water Resources, Distinguished Fulbright-University of Leeds Scholar Award, Fulbright Senior Specialist Awards, and U.S. National Research Council /NOAA Senior Research Associateship Award. He serves on the editorial boards of several international journals such as Ecosystem Health and Sustainability, Geography and Sustainability, Science China Earth Sciences, and Chinese Geographical Sciences.

His research focuses on watershed hydrology, nonpoint source pollution modeling, watershed science, and comparative analysis of Sino-U.S. water resource policies. The ArcView Nonpoint Source Pollution Modeling (AVNPSM) software he developed for hydrological and nonpoint source pollution modeling has been applied in 12 countries. The Distributed Large Basin Runoff Model (DLBRM), developed in collaboration with the NOAA Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory has been successfully applied to over 40 North America's Great Lakes watersheds, and watersheds in Northwest China and other countries. He pioneered research on quantifying the impacts of soil heterogeneity on watershed hydrological processes. He developed an analytical framework for analysis of climate and land use/land cover change on hydrological processes and water resources. In recent years, he has proposed the framework of watershed science to provide a complementary approach to the existing water management programs in addressing the current global water crisis and achieving the UN SDGs. He is an adjunct faculty in a number of international institutions and serves as a reviewer for both national and international institutions such as those in Australian, Belgium, Canada, China, UK, and the United States, etc. He has published over 110 articles in leading national and international journals and authored/co-authored 10 books.


  • GEOG 3500: Principles of Conservation and Environmental Management
  • GEOG 6610: Geographic Research
  • GEOG 5530: Water Resources Management
  • GEOG 5550: Contemporary Issues in Natural Resources Management

Current projects

  • Development and refinement of a distributed large basin runoff model (DLBRM) to support water resources research and decision making in the Great Lakes Basin, in collaboration with Thomas Croley of the NOAA Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory.
  • Analysis of hydrological and ecological impacts of land use activities in the Yellow River basin, and understanding of water movement among glacial, oasis, and desert in arid Northwest China, in collaboration with Lanzhou University and The Chinese Academy of Sciences.

Recent Grants

  • PI, “Impacts of land use/cover change on land surface water-energy processes in the agricultural-pastoral transitional zone, Northwest China”, NSF of China, 1/1/2016 – 12/31/2020.
  • PI, Observations and experiments on heterogeneity of soil hydraulic properties and its effects on hydrological processes in the Upper Reaches of the Heihe Watershed, Northwest China, NSF of China, 1/1/2012 – 12/31/2015.
  • Principal expert, Key issues in ecological-hydrological-socio-economical system of Greater Dunhuang Ecosystem, 2013 Key Research Support Program of Central Government Higher Education Basic Research Founding, Lanzhou University,1/1/2013-12/31/2014 .
  • Collaborator, Impacts of Climate Change on the Hydrological Process of Water Cycle in Arid Northwest China (2010CB951002), The Ministry of Science and Technology, 06//1/2010-05/31/2015.

Selected Publications

  • He, C. 2016. Quantifying Drivers of the Sediment Load Reduction in the Yellow River Basin. "National Science Review," 3(2): 155-156, doi: 10.1093/nsr/nww014 (SCI Impact Factor: 8.0).
  • TIAN, Jie, Baoqing ZHANG, Chansheng HE*, Xiao BEI .2016. Variability of Soil Hydraulic Conductivity and Soil Hydrological Response under Different Land Cover in the Mountainous Area of the Heihe River Watershed, Northwest China. "Land Degradation and Development" (in press). DOI: 10.1002/ldr.2665 (SCI Impact Factor: 8.20)
  • Zhang, Baoqing and Chansheng He. 2016. A modified water demand estimation method for drought identification over arid and semiarid regions. "Agricultural and Forest Meteorology" 230-231:58-66 (SCI),
  • ZHANG, Baoqing, Chansheng He, Morey Burnham, and Lanhui Zhang. 2016. Evaluating the coupling effects of climate aridity and vegetation restoration on soil erosion over the Loess Plateau in China. "Science of the Total Environment," 539:436-449 (SCI),
  • Ding, Yongjian, Shiqiang Zhang, Fengjing Liu, Daqing Yang, Chansheng He, and Svetlana Stuefer. 2016. Hydrometeorological Observation and Study in High Altitude Area. "Advances in Meteorology," Doi:10.1155/2016/1372464. (Editorial).

For the complete list of grants, publications and projects, please download He's CV below.


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