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Water engineering and natural environment

Our research staff are specialised in sediment transportation, flow-structure interaction, coastal hydrodynamics and environmental flows.  Our research under this theme includes both numerical modelling and experimental work in one of the UK’s largest hydraulics labs.

Ecosystem Services and Poverty Alleviation

Examples of activity focussed on two complementary research programmes on river basin management in Africa:

'Water governance, livelihoods and wellbeing: adapting to change in African river basins'

A project development grant funded by NERC/ESRC/DFID under the Ecosystems Services and Poverty Alleviation Programme. We worked with academics from the University of Maiduguri in Nigeria and Sokoine University of Agriculture in Tanzania.

'Understanding water governance in challenging environments'

We carrired out research with the University of Dar-es-Salaam on the Usangu Basin, in south-west Tanzania. In this programme, funded by the British Academy, we studied the evolution of institutions for water governance in the Usangu basin.

PREPARED - addressing challenges for water supply and sanitation brought about by climate change

PREPARED was an EC FP7 funded project which sought to develop advanced strategies in meeting the upcoming challenges for water supply and sanitation brought about by climate change.

It provides a framework that links comprehensive research with development programmes in these utilities. The vision is that this connection can provide significant synergistic opportunities that the utilities will draw on to improve their preparedness for the ongoing changes related to the provision of water supply and sanitation.

The research carried out by The University of Bradford as part of the PREPARED project primarily focuses on water governance structures that support a more adaptive and water sensitive future. The primary aim of the project is to deliver tools, and the knowledge and learning material, for all stakeholders to be able to build capacity for managing water supply and sanitation using an adaptive approach.

To address this aim the research sought to explore:

  1. the range of water futures that actors want to achieve
  2. the rationales through which these various water futures are justified
  3. the arenas and processes in which the differences between contrasting water futures are manifested
  4. what encourages or limits an enabling environment in which actors can achieve the desired change

The initial findings of this study were published in a report entitled: A framework for adopting to climate change in the water and sanitation sector: The case of Wales.

The report presents outcomes from an intense research phase in which our partner utility in the Prepared project, Dwr Cymru Welsh Water (DCWW), and other organisations with some role in water management in Wales have been examined in terms of their work towards climate change adaptation.

Water engineering and natural environment team