Rafael L. Bras

K. Harrison Brown Family Chair and Professor
Regents' Professor
Email Address
Office Building
Ford ES&T
Office Room Number

Dr. Bras is the former provost and executive vice president for Academic Affairs at the Georgia Institute of Technology.  He is a professor in the School of Civil and Environmental Engineering and School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences.  He holds the K. Harrison Brown Family Chair Prior to becoming provost, Dr. Bras was Distinguished Professor and Dean of the Henry Samueli School of Engineering of the University of California, Irvine. For 32 years prior to joining UCI he was a professor in the departments of Civil and Environmental Engineering and Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences at MIT. He is past Chair of the MIT Faculty, former head of the Civil and Environmental Engineering department and Director of the Ralph M. Parsons Laboratory at MIT. He has served as advisor to many government and private institutions.  Some of the most significant ones include:  Advisory Board, Engineering Directorate, NSF; Board of Atmospheric Sciences and Climate, National Research Council; Chairman, Earth Systems Sciences and Applications Committee of NASA and the NASA Advisory Committee; National Academy of Sciences Committee on New Orleans Regional Hurricane Protection Projects; Advisory to departments at Cornell university, Princeton university, Johns Hopkins, Technion, RPI, University of Puerto Rico; University of California-Irvine; Fundacion Chile; Instituto Veneto; Stockholm Water Foundation and Prize; Clarke prize. He is a director of the American Geophysical Union and a former member of the UCI Foundation. Dr. Bras has been very active in several professional organizations. He is past president of the Hydrology section of AGU and is presently a member of its Board of Directors. Dr. Bras has received many honors and awards.  These include: honorary degree for the University of Perugia, Italy, Hispanic Engineer National Achievement Award Hall of Fame member, NASA Public Service Medal, the Macelwane Medal of AGU, John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship, the Athalie Richardson Irvine Clarke Prize, Simon W. Freese Environmental Engineering Award, Honorary Diplomate of Water Resources Engineering of the American Academy of Water Resources Engineers, Horton Medal of AGU, AGU Hydrology Days Award, and Drexel University’s 2010 Anthony J. Drexel Exceptional Achievement. He is an elected member of the US National Academy of Engineering, the Academy of Arts and Sciences of Puerto Rico, and corresponding member of the Mexican National Academy of Engineering. He is ALSO an elected Fellow of AGU, ASCE, AMS and AAAS. Dr. Bras maintains an active international consulting practice. Presently he chairs a panel of experts that supervises the design and construction of a multibillion-dollar project to protect the City of Venice from floods.  Dr. Bras has published two textbooks, over 180 refereed journal publications, and several hundred other publications and presentations.

In the News

CEE Faculty Named Regents' Entrepreneurs, Professors and Researchers

16 August 2023

Three faculty members received the University System of Georgia’s highest recognition for academic, research, and innovation excellence at the August meeting of the Board of Regents. Rafael Bras was named a Regents’ Professor, M. Talat Odman a Regents’ Researcher, and J. David Frost a Regents’ Entrepreneur.