School of Engineering

Catchment and Water Management

Catchment and Water Management

Our research

An innovative catchment systems approach and Nature-Based Solutions to water management.

Innovative river basin management

Over two decades, our Group has developed a distinctive catchment systems approach. We:

  • provide the science and engineering base for the management of flooding, pollution, and water resources
  • pioneer the use of Nature-Based Solutions to water management

Real world impacts

We draw on our own field studies across Northern England as well as data from around the world to develop multi-scale monitoring strategies and modelling tools. We use these to research the impacts of interventions in the landscape. Our work in this area includes: 

  • a comprehensive assessment of land use management impact on catchment scale flood generation
  • development of multi-functional controls on water and nutrient runoff for agricultural land management
  • Natural Flood Management (NFM) soft engineering interventions with measurable impacts on flood peak

Our catchment systems studies have shown when the effects of pollution mitigation are detectable. We are also improving the management of the water, energy, and food nexus alongside our colleagues from Agriculture and Energy.

Working with landowners and regulators

We have developed our multi-scale scientific approach through collaboration with landowners and regulators. Done across a range of spatial scales, we have shown that this provides the solid evidence needed to underpin national policy.

Water management infrastructure at a reservoir


Our team

Dr Stephen Birkinshaw
Researcher in Water Resources


Dr Nathan Forsythe
Newcastle University Research Fellow

Telephone: 0191 208 6875

Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 5950

Dr Jennine Jonczyk
Researcher in Water Resources

Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 8599

Dr Greg O'Donnell
Senior Researcher in Land Use Management Effects in Extreme Floods

Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 5221

Dr Paul Quinn
Senior Lecturer in Catchment Hydrology

Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 5773

Dr Eleanor Starkey
Research Associate


Dr Brian Thomas
Senior Lecturer in Hydrology


David Walker
Research Assistant