Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee has its roots in the Roorkee College established in 1847 as the first engineering college in India, which was rechristened as Thomason College of Civil Engineering in 1854 after its mentor James Thomason. After about 100 years of distinguished services, the college was elevated to University of Roorkee on November 25, 1949 as the first Engineering University of the independent India.On September, 2001, the University was converted into an IIT by the Government of India. It has now 21 academic departments/centres offering various courses like 12 undergraduate courses in engineering and architecture, 3 dual degree programmes and about 48 postgraduate courses in engineering, architecture,sciences, computer applications and business administration besides research programmes at doctoral level.

The Department of Hydrology is one among the 19 academic departments of the Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee. The department came into existence with the inception of the International Post Graduate Course in Hydrology in 1972, being the first such a programme in a developing country. The courses, offered by the Department are presently sponsored by the Government of India and the UNESCO.  The Department has nine dedicated full time faculty members having specializations in surface water hydrology, water resources systems, watershed management, Geo-hydrology, ground water geophysics, stochastic hydrology, hydro-informatics,  environmental hydrology etc.