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Niel Allen

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Civil and Environmental Engineering

Division Head Irrigation

Associate Professor

Contact Information

Go toOffice Location: ENGR 227
DialPhone: 435-797-3926

Educational Background

PhD, Civil Engineering, University of Idaho, 1991
Economic and Statistical Based On-Farm Irrigation Scheduling
MS, Agricultural and Irrigation Engineering, Utah State University, 1980
Advance Rates in Furrow Irrigation of Cycled Flow
BS, Agricultural and Irrigation Engineering, Utah State University, 1979

Licensures & Certifications

New Mexico Professional Civil Engineer, New Mexico Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers & Professional Surveyors, 2002
Nevada Professional Civil Engineer, Nevada Board of Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors, 1995
California Professional Civil Engineer, California Board for Professional Engineers, Land Surveyors, and Geologists, 1994
Utah Professional Civil Engineer, Utah (Department of Commerce - Divsion of Occupation & Professional Licensing, 1987


I received my BS and MS from USU in Agriculture and Irrigation Engineering and a PhD in Civil Engineering from the University of Idaho. I worked in the irrigation business for 5 years, 8 years with Cooperative Extension, and 19 years with consulting engineering firms.

Teaching Interests

My teaching opportunities are in workshops to water users and water agency personnel, one-on-one teaching with farmers, landscapers, gardeners, and county agents, preparation of documents, and as invited to lecture in classes. My objective is to provide information to water users and managers to help solve water and irrigation problems and manage water resources in Utah. My career has provided me opportunities to work with water managers, attorneys, and water users in the resolution of complex water allocation and water rights conflicts. Irrigation as the largest water use in Utah is my primary focus.

Research Interests

My interest is to help facilitate the effective utilization of water resources in the State of Utah to benefit the citizens based on established water rights, current water uses, and future water use needs and opportunities. I am focused on 1) developing efficient irrigation management practices and technologies, 2) exploring opportunities for cooperation that mutually benefit agriculture, domestic, commercial, municipal, industrial, energy, and environmental water users, 3) integrating information from multiple disciplines that utilize or impact water and 4) implementing methods to disseminate information from researchers and industry to water users and managers. I am developing management practices that can be implemented by irrigation system operators, farmers, homeowners, landscapers, gardeners, and small acreage operators. My current research proposal concerns deficit irrigation of pasture to provide water for critical water uses for the growing population and during droughts or water shortages. I'm also interested in using remotely sensed information for estimating consumptive use for water administration and accounting.

Publications - Abstracts

    Publications - Books & Book Chapters

      Book Chapters

    • Steinitz, T., Wagner, K.M, Drost, D.T, Alston, D.G, Hunter, B., Nischwitz, C., Ramirez, R., Allen, L., Barnhill, J.V, Frame, D., Pace, M., Durward, C., Reeve, J., Jewkes, M., Heflebower, R.F, (2014). A Guide to Common Organic Gardening Questions. USU Extension *

    * Has not been peer reviewed

    Publications - Fact Sheets

    * Has not been peer reviewed

    Publications - Curriculum

      * Has not been peer reviewed

      Publications - Journal Articles

      * Has not been peer reviewed

      Publications - Literary Journal

        * Has not been peer reviewed

        Publications - MultiMedia

        * Has not been peer reviewed

        Publications - Technical Reports

          Research Reports

        * Has not been peer reviewed

        Publications - Translations & Transcripts

          Publications - Other

          * Has not been peer reviewed


          Agriculture (Irrigation) and Natural Resources (Water), 2009 - Ongoing

          Graduate Students Mentored

          Chad Withers, Civil & Environmental Engineering, January 2020
          Levi Manley, Civil & Environmental Engineering, November 2019
          Ihsan Bugra Bugdayci, Civil & Environmental Engineering, August 2018
          Hadia Akbar, Civil & Environmental Engineering, August 2017
          Arthur Pratt, Civil & Environmental Engineering, August 2014 - August 2016
          Manuel Diaz, Civil & Environmental Engineering, August 2015 - May 2016