Gregory Harrington

Professor & Department Chair


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Room: 2203
Engineering Hall
1415 Engineering Drive
Madison, WI 53706

Ph: (608) 695-3380
Fax: (608) 262-5199

Profile Summary

My academic interests focus on treatment, distribution, energy use and regulatory policy for drinking water systems. Research highlights include studies of emerging waterborne pathogen removal in the wake of Milwaukee’s Cryptosporidium outbreak, prevention of nitrification when using chloramines as a disinfectant, and modeling of disinfectant decay and disinfection byproduct formation in treatment and distribution. Locally, my graduate students have helped Madison Water Utility improve water quality and reduce electricity use, electricity costs, and water loss. Three of our publications have been recognized with national awards from the American Water Works Association (AWWA).

Teaching highlights include integration of the professional engineering community into courses ranging from freshman engineering to hydraulic engineering to senior capstone design. They also include integration of community-based learning partners – UniverCity Alliance and Morgridge Center for Public Service – into senior capstone design. My teaching has been recognized with awards from students for outstanding instruction and from the College of Engineering for innovative teaching and learning practices. Our senior capstone design program has received seven national awards from the National Council of Examiners for Engineers and Surveyors.

My administrative contributions have included leading the creation of an undergraduate degree program in environmental engineering and an undergaduate certificate program in architecture. I also led an academic/industry partnership to conduct a comprehensive review and revision of curriculum requirements for our long-standing undergraduate degree program in civil engineering.

During my UW-Madison career, I served from 2000 to 2011 on the Board of the Madison Water Utility, with the latter two years as President. I have continued my volunteer service to the utility as a member of its Water Quality Technical Advisory Committee. I also serve as Chair of the Pieper Family Foundation Endowment for Servant Leadership, which includes facilitating leadership education programming in the College of Engineering and co-leading the triennial campuswide implementation of the Multi-Institutional Study of Leadership. My service has been recognized with awards from the university’s College of Engineering and Division of Student Life, as well as AWWA’s Wisconsin Section.

Prior to arriving at UW-Madison, I worked 4 years as a consulting engineer with Malcolm Pirnie (now part of Arcadis), where I participated in design projects and numerous paper, bench-scale, and pilot-scale studies across the United States for systems ranging in size from 1 million to 1 billion gallons per day. I also led the creation of a computer program used to develop federal regulations for control of disinfectants and disinfection byproducts. I have an undergraduate degree in chemical engineering from Stanford University as well as MS and PhD degrees in environmental engineering from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

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