Gualtiero Jaeger, Director

Gualtiero is a PhD Candidate in the MIT-WHOI Joint Program, studying physical oceanography. His research takes him to the Indian Ocean, with an international project aiming to better understand the ocean’s role in the regional Monsoon rainfall patterns. Born in Brazil but lived most his life in Switzerland, he received a Bachelor in Physics from the University of California Santa Barbara, after which he switched the sunny west coast for the temperamental east coast. Salty water is his passion.

Quantum Wei

Quantum is a graduate student in the Mechanical Engineering Department at MIT, where he researches the energy-efficient design of reverse osmosis systems. He received his SB at MIT in Mechanical Engineering. In the past, Quantum's work at Microsoft and NASA has focused on thermal-fluids modeling. He enjoys cooking, teaching, and playing sports.

Krithika Ramchander

Krithika is a Master’s student in the Mechanical Engineering Department currently working on the development of water filters using plant tissue. She is also a fellow with the TATA Center for Technology and Design. Prior to MIT, Krithika worked with Shell for a year and completed her Bachelor’s from Indian Institute of Technology Delhi. 


Brendan Smith

Brendan is a fourth year PhD student in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering. His research focuses on the experimental fabrication of nanoporous materials for applications in water filtration and energy generation and storage. His primary interest is bridging the gap between emerging disruptive technologies and the real world applications where they can make a difference. He is also very interested in entrepreneurship, sustainability, and policy!

Deepa Rao

Deepa is a graduate student in Biological Oceanography at the MIT-WHOI Joint Program for Oceanography, where she focuses on modeling the microbial ecology of the ocean. Another one of her missions is to better communicate ocean science to the public. She received a B.S. in Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Science from MIT. Prior to returning to Cambridge, Deepa spent two years in Washington D.C. getting her M.A. in Communication, Culture, and Technology from Georgetown University. She enjoys outdoor adventures, nature documentaries, and watercoloring.

Isadora Cruxen

Isadora is a PhD candidate in urban studies and international development, focusing on urban water supply governance and sustainable water resources management in the Global South. Originally from Brazil, she holds a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from the University of Brasília and a Master in City Planning from MIT/DUSP. Prior to MIT, Isadora worked as a research assistant at the Institute for Applied Economic Research in Brazil on projects about public participation in policy development. She has previously served as Co-Vice President and Lecture Series Chair of the MIT Water Club.


Dan Peckham

Dan is a graduate student in public policy at the Harvard Kennedy School studying the intersection of the public and private sectors for environmental issues. Before graduate school, Dan worked at the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission managing programs and coordinating regional workgroups in the areas such as water quality standards and toxic algae. He is interested in finding ways that science, public policy, and business can be used together to effectively solve our pressing water issues.


Maher Damak

Maher is a fouth-year PhD candidate in the Mechanical Engineering department. He is particularly interested in fluid mechanics and interfacial phenomena, and his research is focused on enhancing the application efficiency of agricultural sprays. Prior to MIT, he graduated from École Polytechnique (France) with a Master’s degree in 2013. His personal interests are traveling, horse riding, and outdoors.

Milani Chatterji-Len

Milani is a second-year undergraduate student in Civil and Environmental Engineering, with a minor in International Development. She works in the Environmental Fluid Mechanics lab, where she studies the transport of sediments through vegetated patches in coastal wetlands. She is passionate about improving access and quality of water and sanitation. Her personal interests include sports, the outdoors and good food.