The MaRIUS research consortium incorporate expertise across the range of drought impacts from environmental, social, humanities, economics and engineering perspectives. Moreover, the consortium has a track record of innovation in the development of interdisciplinary science and stakeholder engagement. The consortium partners (Oxford, Bristol and Cranfield Universities, the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology and the Met Office) have worked together in a variety of collaborations, and are motivated by the prospect of developing an interdisciplinary and integrative approach to drought impacts analysis and risk management, which we consider to be very timely, both scientifically and in practice.
Meet the researchers below!
|Prof Jim Hall, FREng, is the Principal Investigator of the MaRIUS project. Jim is the Director of the Environmental Change Institute at the University of Oxford. His research focuses upon management of climate-related risks in infrastructure systems, in particular relating to various dimensions of water security, including flooding and water scarcity. He is the engineer on the Adaptation Sub-Committee of the independent Committee on Climate Change and, until 2015, was co-chair of the Global Water Partnership / OECD Task force on the economics of water security. He advises the World Bank on water security and is editor of the AGU journal Water Resources Research.
Jim’s research within the MaRIUS project, focuses on the water system modelling aspects; the economic impact assessments; and the synthesis of options and strategies for management.
|Prof Myles Allen is Professor of Geosystem Science in the University of Oxford. He has been the Principal Investigator of the climateprediction.net project since its inception in 1999. He is also a long-standing contributor to the IPCC in the area of formal methods of detection of change and attribution of causes. Myles’ work for MaRIUS centres on the creation of two drought datasets: a new hindcast dataset of past droughts that will augment back to 1880 limited historical records using the 20th Century Reanalysis dataset downscaled to 25km resolution over Europe; a and a synthetic event set of present day and future hydrometeorological drought conditions for the UK though the use of large ensemble of high resolution regional climate model outputs. This work will be undertaken with Richard Jones, Simon Dadson, and Benoit Guillod.|
|Dr Mike Acreman is the Science Lead for Natural Capital at the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology in Wallingford. Mike’s research interests lie at the interface between hydrology and ecology, with a particular reference to wetland environments. Mike recently led the definition of UK river requirements to meet the European Water Framework Directive, and as leader of the World Bank Environment Flow advisory panel, he has supported the development of environmental flow allocations in Tanzania and China, and he has coordinated the definition of guidelines on environmental flow releases from reservoirs as the UK contribution to the World Commission on Dams. As a member of the Scientific and Technical Review Panel of the International Convention on Wetlands responsible for water programme, he has developed guidance for Contracting Parties groundwater and water quality issues of wetlands. Mike’s work on MaRIUS will be to assess the effect of drought on aquatic ecosystems, along with Pam Berry and Cedric Laize, particularly with regard to wetlands, using model outputs from other project researchers as well as existing data and models.|
|Simon Abele is the project’s Data Manager. Simon Abele is based in the School of Geography and the Environment at the University of Oxford, and has extensive experience of data curatorship and geospatial database management.|
|Dr Pam Berry is Leader of the Biodiversity and Climate Adaptation group in the University of Oxford, focussing upon the assessment of change in biodiversity and ecosystem services in the UK and elsewhere in Europe. She was a Lead Author on the England Synthesis chapter for the UK National Ecosystem Assessment and on the Working Group for UK Terrestrial Biodiversity Climate Change Impacts Report Card.
Pam’s work in MaRIUS focuses on assessing the effects of droughts and climate change on terrestrial ecosystems both by examining changes in suitable climate space for species from particular communities, and by using a process-based model to project impacts on woodlands and trees and possible drought mortality responses.
|Dr Vicky Bell leads the Hydrological Modelling and Risk group at the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology in Wallingford. She specialises in the development of spatially-distributed hydrological models, and modelling of hydro-ecological systems as affected by natural hazards, including the Grid-to-Grid hydrological model, currently used for UK-wide seasonal hydrological forecast system (“Hydrological Outlooks”). For MaRIUS, Vicky leads a team at CEH developing and applying national gridded hydrological models to enhance the representation of drought processes.|
|Dr Mike Bowes is Head of the Water Quality Processes Group at the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, based at Wallingford. He specialises in conducting within-river mesocosm experiments to investigate the effects of nutrient concentration, light and flow on algal growth and microbial community structure. Dr Bowes manages the CEH Thames Initiative monitoring programme, which carries out high quality chemical and biological monitoring along the River Thames and its tributaries.|
|Dr Gianbattista Bussi is a Honorary Research Associate at Oxford University with interests that include hydrological and sedimentological distributed modelling at the catchment scale, analysis of climate change impact on water resources and soil erosion, and reservoir sedimentation. He contributed to developing the hydrological distributed model TETIS and its sediment cycle sub-model. Gianbattista’s main activity within MaRIUS is the hydrological, sediment and water quality modelling in the context of land-use and climate change, under the supervision of Dr Simon Dadson and Prof Paul Whitehead. He also worked on the POLL-CURB project (Changes in Urbanisation and its Effects on Water Quantity and Quality from Local to Regional Scale).|
|Ed Byers was a postdoctoral research assistant at Oxford University. Ed’s research interests covers infrastructure, environmental risks, the water energy nexus and development. His expertise is at the interface between water resources and energy systems. Ed joins the MaRIUS project from Newcastle University, having recently submitted his PhD on low-carbon and water-secure electricity generation in the UK. He will work on investigating the impacts of drought on the electricity sector in the UK. This includes development of a module for characterising future water demands of the electricity sector, and development of simulation rules to implement different abstraction licensing regimes.|
|Dr Christina Cook was a researcher at the Centre for Socio-Legal Studies, at Oxford University, where she analyses regulatory governance arrangements (law, policy and practices) for water scarcity in England and Wales. Her work for MaRIUS engaged legal scholars, economists, human geographers, hydrologists, and climate scientists in the development of a more risk-based approach to governance of drought. Her core research Interests include water security and the water-energy nexus; scale and politics in water governance; and the intersection of land use planning and water governance.|
|Dr Gemma Coxon is a post-doctoral research associate at the University of Bristol. She is working with Jim Freer in the MaRIUS project focusing on integrating drought hydrology to the national scale and improving the representation of drought processes within hydrological models.
Gemma’s interests include quantifying and accounting for uncertainty in data and hydrological models, modelling in human impacted catchments and assessing future changes in hydrological extremes.
|Dr Christopher Decker is a Research Fellow specialising in Law and Economics in the University of Oxford. He is a member of the Global Water Partnership’s Expert Group on the Benefits of Action/ Cost of Inaction for Drought Preparedness; the International Water Association’s Working Group on public policy and regulation for resilience; and the UK Competition and Market Authority’s academic panel. His work in the water sector has included: assessing the prospects for competition in the water industry; the reform of the abstractions regime in England and Wales; the development of pricing principles for the Australian National Water Commission; and the design of access, exit and termination fees for network access.
Chris’s research in MaRIUS focuses on the economic impact assessment and economic regulatory governance. He is also working on the Historic Droughts project within the NERC Drought and Water Scarcity Programme.
|Dr Simon Dadson is a University Lecturer in Physical Geography in the University of Oxford. Dr Dadson researches the links between climate change, hydrology and Earth surface processes. In research funded under NERC’s Changing Water Cycle Programme, Dr Dadson has investigated the impacts of climate, land-cover change and urbanization on river flow and water quality in the Thames basin and recently has integrated a river-routing model into the Met Office’s regional climate model. Simon’s work for MaRIUS centres on the creation of two drought datasets: a new hindcast dataset of past droughts that will augment back to 1880 limited historical records using the 20th Century Reanalysis dataset downscaled to 25km resolution over Europe; a and a synthetic event set of present day and future hydrometeorological drought conditions for the UK though the use of large ensemble of high resolution regional climate model outputs. This work will be undertaken with Richard Jones, Myles Allen, and Benoit Guillod.|
|Dr Alex Elliott is a Lake Ecosystem Modeller and is in charge of the Algal Modelling Unit, based at the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, Lancaster. He examines phytoplankton community assembly and has developed the PROTECH (Phytoplankton RespOnses To Environmental CHange) model, which simulates the growth of multiple algal species in lakes and reservoirs.|
|Prof Jim Freer is a Professor of Hydrology at the School of Geographical Sciences, University of Bristol and head of the Hydrology Research Group. He is internationally-renowned for the development and application of rainfall-runoff models and uncertainty analysis approaches. Jim has >20 years of experience leading environmental modelling and uncertainty analysis techniques to quantify model predictions.|
|Dr Jaume Freire Gonzalez was a postdoctoral research associate at the University of Oxford. He worked as a consultant for many governments and institutions and has conducted both theoretical and empirical research on several issues related to environmental and ecological economics, but his main areas of work are water economics, energy economics, and environmental taxation. He has widely used applied economic modeling methods such as environmental econometrics or general equilibrium modeling (Input-output analysis and extensions) to assess environmental problems, from an academic and a policy-making perspective. He holds a PhD in Applied Economics from the Autonomous University of Barcelona. Jaume’s work on MaRIUS centres on the economic analysis of the impacts of droughts.|
|Dr Helen Gavin is the MaRIUS project manager, as well as a Principal at Atkins, undertaking consultancy work for many clients including regulators and water companies, focusing on water and sustainability issues. Her MaRIUS role is part-time, and so she will be continuing with her existing Atkins job part-time as well. Helen has a background in hydrology and environmental science, and has been working in the water sector for over 13 years. Her interests and experience is wide ranging and includes wetlands, hydroecological investigations, water resource management including droughts, and also wider sustainability issues such as greenhouse gas reporting, water footprinting, and renewable energy.|
|Dr Kevin Grecksch is a researcher at the Centre for Socio-Legal Studies, University of Oxford. He is a social scientist who specialises in water governance and climate change adaptation. His work for MaRIUS focusses on Task D.2 and will explore and review options for drought management practice in the UK. Kevin’s core research interests include water governance, climate change adaptation, governance of societal transformation processes, property rights and natural resources, sustainability, ecological economics and the governance of sustainable bioenergy supply chains.|
|Dr Benoit Guillod is a Honorary Research Associate at the University of Oxford.Benoit is working on the climate modelling elements of the MaRIUS project. He will be using weather@home to produce a validated, synthetic set of droughts and heat waves within the framework of probabilistic event attribution in the UK. He will be creating two drought datasets: a new hindcast dataset of past droughts that will augment back to 1880 limited historical records using the 20th Century Reanalysis dataset downscaled to 25km resolution over Europe; a and a synthetic event set of present day and future hydrometeorological drought conditions for the UK though the use of large ensemble of high resolution regional climate model outputs. This work will be undertaken with Richard Jones, Myles Allen, and Simon Dadson.|
Luke is working on the MaRIUS and TITAN projects, using weather@home simulations to investigate the drivers of extreme weather events from the early 20th Century over the UK and Europe. Luke will also explore how the broader characteristics of climate extremes will change with continued warming.Prior to joining the ECI, Luke completed his PhD at the Victoria University of Wellington in New Zealand, where he investigated novel approaches to quantify the emergence of anthropogenic climate change. This included an event-specific attribution study on the 2013 New Zealand drought, as well as highlighting differences in the emergence of heat extremes for the global population when aggregated by income grouping.
|Prof Ian Holman’s research is focused on understanding the effects of interactions between agricultural management, soil properties and weather on soil degradation, yields and hydrological response at catchment to continental scales.
Ian has over 25 years’ experience in research and consultancy in sustainable land and water resource management for a range of public and private funders. He leads the Impact workstream in MaRIUS and Cranfield University’s inputs to the agricultural activities within MaRIUS, Historic Droughts and ENDOWS.
|Dr Nicholas Howden is Senior Lecturer in Water in the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Bristol. His research aims to understand how surface and groundwater flow processes influence catchment-scale hydrology and biogeochemistry responses. He is currently PI on the NERC project (NE/H000704/1) to model UK catchment water quality responses to climate land use change since 1868. In 2003 he was awarded the Geological Society Prize for his research on surface/groundwater interaction.|
|Dr Katie Jenkins is a postdoctoral research associate at the University of Oxford, where she has worked on various multidisciplinary projects with a focus on integrated assessment of climate impacts and adaptation strategies. Katie’s main research interests include modelling direct and indirect social and economic impacts of climate change, with particular regard to extreme weather such as drought, extreme temperatures and surface water flooding, and assessing consequences for adaptation strategies from an interdisciplinary perspective. Katie is working with Chris Decker on the economic assessment of drought and on the development of the Droughts ‘Impacts Dashboard’.|
|Prof Richard Jones is a Science Fellow at the Met Office Hadley Centre where he has been responsible for developing its regional climate modelling capability and advising on its use for the construction and application of climate change scenarios including for UKCIP02 and UKCP09. He has worked with Dr Bell and colleagues, including Dr Simon Dadson, for over 10 years on application of downscaled climate scenarios in grid-based and catchment river flow models including analysing uncertainties in future projections. For MaRIUS, Richard will be involved in the work to derive a climate event set for drought risk analysis.|
|Dr Alison Kay is a reseracher at CEH Wallingford, with interests in the potential impacts of climate change on hydrology. She is specifically interested in the development and application of continuous simulation rainfall-runoff models, both catchment-based and national gridded models, to simulate river flows across Britain. For MaRIUS, Alison will be working with Vicky Bell on the development and application of national gridded hydrological models to enhance the representation of drought processes.|
|Dr Bettina Lange is an Associate Professor in Law and Regulation, based in the Centre for Socio-Legal Studies at the University of Oxford, based in the Centre for Socio-Legal Studies. Her research is concerned with understanding opportunities for and limits to law in environmental regulation. Her previous work has involved an analysis of the implementation of Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control Regimes in the UK and Germany. Her research draws on qualitative empirical and social theoretical perspectives. On MaRIUS, Bettina has been working on socio-legal aspects of the project including drought governance.|
|Dr Catharina Landström‘s is a Research Fellow at the School of Geography and the Environment, University of Oxford. Her research interests include up-stream public engagement and critical analysis of the role of environmental expertise in decision making. She specialises in interdisciplinary and participatory research and has worked with the development of the ‘Environmental Competency Groups’ methodology in the contexts of floods and droughts. She has been involved from the beginning with the new ‘Community Modelling’ technique for local engagement. Catharina has published widely on environmental competency groups and environmental science in society, most recently the book Transdisciplinary Environmental Research: A Practical Approach (London: Palgrave MacMillan, 2017). See: www.environmentalcompetencygroups.org
|Cedric Laize is a hydro-ecological modeller at the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology in Wallingford. His current interests include hydrological and/or spatial information relevant to ecological studies; large-scale climate-flow-ecology association; and hydraulic geometry. He works on the topics of flow regimes, physical habitat and ecological response; and the ecological Consequences of Floods. Cedric’s work on MaRIUS will be to undertake an assessment of the effect of droughts on ecology, by combining hydrological alteration metrics and using eco-hydrological models of organism/community response to long-term discharge. The output will be biologically-based eco-hydrological indicators of low flow regimes enabling assessment of implications of drought for fish, macro-invertebrates and macrophytes. This will be undertaken in association with Pam Berry and Mike Acreman.|
|Jaeyoung Lee is a doctoral candidate at the University of Oxford’s Environmental Change Institute with interests that include hydrological and environmental modelling at the catchment scale and analysis of climate change impact on water resources and water quality. Her DPhil research focuses on understanding the role of water quality in the management of water supplies under a changing climate. Her research aims to evaluate the impacts of climate change on the dynamics of water quality during droughts and in the drought periods, and to assess the climate-related risks and uncertainties to water quality. Jaeyoung is working with Paul Whitehead and Gianbattista Bussi as the water quality team in MaRIUS project.|
|Dr Jude Musuuza is a post-doctoral researcher at the University of Bristol. Jude completed his PhD at the Institute for Geosciences of the Friedrich-Schiller-University at Jena, Germany, on the subject of Scaling Haline Flows in Saturated Heterogeneous Formations, following an MSc in Water Resources Engineering and Management. In the MaRIUS project, Jude is working with Thorsten Wagener and others to use the Penn State Integrated Hydrologic Model (PIHM) for a physically based modelling approach to low flow modelling, at a range of different scales. Jude will compare the model’s effectiveness with conceptual catchment models and simplified aquifer models that are currently used for water resources assessment and drought planning.|
|Dr Mohammad Mortazavi is a post-doctoral researcher at the University of Oxford. Mohammad’s research is focused on applying optimization methods in water resources management. His main interest is to address uncertainty and deep uncertainty associated with climate change and demand growth factors in water resources planning, especially during low-flow events and droughts. Developing drought management plans and also risk-based analysis of water planning are other research interests.
For MaRIUS, his work involves developing water system models for the Thames basin and on a national scale to assess vulnerability of different users to drought events either in a catchment or on a national scale. His main interest is to address uncertainty and deep uncertainty associated with climate change and demand growth factors in water resources planning, especially during low-flow events and droughts.
Before arriving at Oxford, he worked at Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO), Australia, as a post-doc fellow. His research aim was to use real options analysis to address planning uncertainty in the commodity sector. He also applied multi-objective optimization to address climate change uncertainty in urban water planning in a research project at university of Newcastle, Australia, granted by National Climate Change Adaptation Research Facility (NCCARF) in Australia. Mohammad earned his PhD at the University of Newcastle, Australia and his Master’s Degree at Kh.N.Toosi university of Technology in Iran. The main focus of his PhD was the application of multi-objective optimization in urban water management for long-term and staged planning.
|Dr Ponnambalam Rameshwaran is a Research Scientist at the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology in Wallingford. Ramesh’s research work focuses on river hydraulics, hydraulic and hydrological modelling and agro-hydrology including flood conveyance, flow behaviour through and around aquatic vegetation, sediment transport behaviour, turbulence measurements and modelling, flood and drought impact, aquatic weed management, river restoration, eco-hydraulics, fluvial ecosystems and physical habitat modelling and brackish water irrigation. His specialist knowledge and experience enable him to develop and apply more practical and refined two-dimensional (2D) and three-dimensional (3D) numerical models based on mathematical equations for the most complex turbulent flow problems in aquatic ecosystems.|
|Dr David Parsons (Principal Research Fellow at Cranfield University) has 30 years’ experience of applying systems modelling, optimisation and other mathematical approaches to agricultural and natural resource management. This has been applied to predict future agricultural land use and the implications for the environment under economic, technical, social, legislative and climate scenarios in the UK and Europe. For MaRIUS, David will be working with Ian Holman on the assessment of droughts effects in the agricultural sector.|
|Dr Ali Rudd is a hydrological modeller at the Centre for Ecology & Hydrology (CEH) in Wallingford.
For MaRIUS, Ali has been using CEH’s national scale gridded hydrological model (Grid-to-Grid, G2G) to identify past and (possible) future hydrological drought events across Great Britain.
|Dr Dolores Rey is a lecturer in Water Policy and Economics at Cranfield University. Her research interests are related to water resources economics and management in agriculture. More specifically water availability risks; droughts and water scarcity impacts, adaptation options and policy approaches; and water trading.
Dolores has more than 8 years of research experience on water availability risks and water economics in the agricultural sector.
Her current research under the UK Drought and Water Scarcity research programme seeks to understand farmer decision-making processes regarding water management during drought events and the financial impacts of droughts on UK agriculture. Before Cranfield, and as part of her PhD at the Technical University of Madrid, Dolores was involved in pan European research addressing the use of water markets to cope with water shortages; drought and flood policies related to the agricultural sector in different countries; and climate change impacts on agriculture.
|Nick Reynard is head of a science section at CEH in Wallingford, managing a large group of land-surface and hydrological modellers. He is Science Area Lead for Natural Hazards, which includes flood and drought prediction and forecasting and land surface modelling. Nick was a member of the Science and Engineering Panel of the Pitt Review of the summer floods of 2007 and represented CEH in the Government Foresight Initiative on Floods (UK, China and USA). His research interests include continuous flow simulation approaches for river flow modelling, in particular application to investigating the implications of environmental (including climate) change, quantification of uncertainty in hydrological modelling under non-stationarity and development of techniques for detecting and attributing trends in environmental datasets.|
|Dr Eric Sarmiento was a post-doctoral researcher at the University of Oxford.
As a member of the Human Geography team on the MaRIUS project, he investigated socio-cultural understandings of drought and water scarcity held by various interested stakeholders. Working closely with Prof Sarah Whatmore and Dr Catharina Landström, Eric explored the potential for diverse knowledge perspectives to be integrated in the generation of formal knowledge and the formulation of policy and management decisions. He holds a PhD from Rutgers University, and has conducted research on alternative food initiatives, urban redevelopment, and fisheries management.
|Prof Sarah Whatmore is Professor of Environment and Public Policy at the University of Oxford. Her research is concerned with the relationship between environmental science and democratic governance. She led the Rural Economy and Land Use Programme (RELU) (ESRC/NERC/BBSRC) project on ‘understanding knowledge controversies’ involving social scientists, hydrological modellers and communities, which won the RELU prize for the ‘best example of interdisciplinary methodology and scientific innovation’. In the MaRIUS project, Sarah is working closely with Dr Catharina Landström, undertaking a social science analysis of how impacts of droughts and water scarcity are currently understood and managed by key actors. The Human Geography work in MaRIUS draws on scholarship at the intersection of science and technology studies and political theory to analyse a varied empirical material, at different scales: nationally and locally. See www.environmentalcompetencygroups.org|
|Prof Thorsten Wagener is the Chair of Water and Environmental Engineering at the University of Bristol. He is an internationally recognized expert in hydrologic modelling and in the development and use of systems approaches in environmental modelling, diagnostic evaluation of environmental models, predictions in ungauged basins (PUB) and integrated assessment of climate change impacts. Thorsten will be leading the work to use the Penn State Integrated Hydrologic Model (PIHM) for a physically based modelling approach to low flow modelling, at a range of different scales. Thorsten will also work with Jim Hall on the water system modelling aspects of the project.|
|Dr Ross Woods is a Senior Lecturer in Water and Environmental Engineering at the University of Bristol. He provided detailed review of causes and effects of major drought in northern New Zealand in 2010-11, and developed and applied a practical river flow forecasting system to support drought management by regional government during the event. He developed a national hydrological model of New Zealand, and applied it to developing New Zealand’s first set of national water accounts. For MaRIUS, Ross will be working on the development and analysis of both catchment and national scale hydrological models.|
|Prof Paul Whitehead has over 35 years’ experience of research on water resources, water quality modelling and climate issues, with a specialist interest in the development of dynamic, stochastic and planning models, integrating hydrology, water quality and ecology. Paul was the director for the NERC Macronutrient Cycles Programme and a Professor at the University of Oxford. Paul’s work for MaRIUS focuses on water quality, and enhancing our the understanding of the effect of drought on water quality in rivers and reservoirs, by examining multiple existing data sets and models, collecting new data and developing new water quality models.|
|Dr Jianjun Yu is a post-doctoral researcher at the University of Oxford. Jianjun completed his PhD at the Nanyang technological University, Singapore, on the subjection of uncertainty analysis of hydrological and flood modelling. His research interests focus on hydrological modelling and water resource management, flood risk assessment, landslide susceptibility mapping, GIS and spatial data analytics. Jianjun’s main task within MaRIUS is to evaluate the ecohydrological and niche modelling options for drought risk assessment, particularly for river and wetland ecosystems; to implement innovative modelling solutions for analysis of the drought risk. This work will be undertaken with Pam Berry and Mike Acreman.|