Kidia Kessiee Gelaye, Ethiopia

Porträt des Stipendiaten/Portray of the Scholarship Holder © OeAD/Stinnig
  • Current position: Assistant Professor, University of Gondar, Institute of Technology, Department of Hydraulics and Water Resource Engineering
  • Scholarship: Austrian Partnership Programme in Higher Education and Research for Development | APPEAR, financed by the Austrian Development Cooperation
  • Duration: MSc 10/2011 – 09/2013 and PhD 11/15 - 04/19
  • Motto: "Caring for nature and feeding a generation", in Amharic: ‘’ተፈጥሮን ተንከባክቦ ትውልድን መመገብ’’

Curriculum Vitae

Kidia Kessiee Gelaye is an assistant professor at the University of Gondar at the Department of Hydraulics and Water Resource Engineering. He teaches irrigation, hydrology and research method courses for M.Sc. students and advises M.Sc. students. Besides, he gives training in the programme “R” to institute staff members for statistical and data science applications. He completed his master’s degree in Mountain Forestry in 2013 and came back to Austria as a PhD candidate at the Institute of Hydraulics and Rural Water Management. His dissertation focuses on tackling the irrigation agriculture salinity problems in the arid area of the Afar Region in Ethiopia.


During my stay at the BOKU I gained new academic experiences and acquired scientific skills. Through OeAD excursions and cultural exchange events I have met international students and researchers. Those years in Austria have led me towards science and inspired my professional life. They have motivated me to engage with professionals in my scientific field and to share knowledge with my current students in Ethiopia. To date, I have close relationships with my PhD advisors and other study friends in Austria, and we are working together in manuscript writing, scientific research publications, and international project applications. Studying in Austria and especially at the BOKU is a great opportunity especially for students who are interested in sustainable natural resources management. Austria is a country with several historic places and where nature is conserved well. Its mountain areas are covered by dense forests and are also a source of pleasure for visitors. The Austrian conservation strategies for nature helped me to work on natural conservation in Ethiopia in order to reduce land degradation. Currently I am leading a research project which aims to improve irrigation water use efficiencies for better agricultural productivity and conserve natural resources. During my studies I also worked as a volunteer for OLIve, the Open Learning Initiative Courses for Refugees. These are free academic courses offered by the University of Vienna for individuals with refugee or asylum seeking status in Austria or another country of the European Economic Area (EEA) who have an interest in pursuing university studies.

Furthermore I participated in international meetings such as the Young African Scientists in Europe (YASE) conference that aimed at building academic skills and creating networks.


From my Ph.D. research, with my doctoral supervisors we have published two scientific research articles (listed on web of sciences), one manuscript that currently is under the revision process for publication and presents my research in the European Geosciences Union (EGU) scientific conference.

1. Gelaye et al., 2020. Application of Artificial Neural Networks and Partial Least Square Regression to predict soil salinity in shallow water table and extreme seepage situations, Ethiopia (under reviewing process)

2. Gelaye K.K, Zehetner F., Loiskandl W., and Klik A. (2019). Comparison of growth of annual crops used for salinity bioremediation in the semi-arid irrigation area. Plant, Soil and Environment Journal, 65:4. DOI:

3. Gelaye K., Zehetner F., Loiskandl W., and Klik A. (2019). Effects of Soil Texture and Groundwater Level on Leaching of Salt from Saline Fields in Kesem Irrigation Scheme, Ethiopia. Soil and water research Journal. DOI:

4. Gelaye K.K., Zehetner F., Loiskandl W., Klik A. (2018): Effectiveness of a Leaching Mitigation for Abandoned Saline Fields in Awash River Basin, Ethiopia. In: European Geosciences Union General Assembly April 4-13, 2018, Vienna, Austria. Vol. 20: p.15927.

5. Gelaye KK. 2019. Salinity Prediction and Mitigation Measures to Reduce Soil Salinity on Irrigated Land in Awash Basin, Ethiopia. Ph.D. Dissertation is available in research gates. DOI: