School of Engineering

Staff Profile

Dr Luke Smith

Lecturer in Data-centric Civil Engineering


Luke is a lecturer focusing on the role of digital technologies and data-centric approaches to civil engineering. He is a qualified civil engineer, produced a doctoral thesis on the application of supercomputer architectures to detailed flood simulation and forecasting, and worked in industry as a software engineer and technical architect on projects for Royal Bank of Scotland, IKEA, Home Group, and British Airways. He founded a start-up company providing geospatial software for outdoor leisure, and worked in professional politics.

Prior to his current position, he was technical architect for, and now leads the software aspects of the Urban Observatory.


  • PhD, Newcastle University: Computational methods for and applications of high-performance computing in flood simulation (2012 - 2018, part-time)
  • MEng (First-class honours), Newcastle University (2008 - 2012)


  • Professional Member of the Chartered Institute for IT
  • Associate Fellow of the Higher Education Academy


Research interests

  • Digital twins
  • Real-time simulation
  • Microsimulation in fluid and traffic systems
  • High-performance computing
  • Federated data systems and technical architecture
  • Smart cities


  • REBUSCOV: Removing operational, infrastructural and entry barriers to urban scale computer vision deployments through delivery of open-source training datasets and system management tools, HEIF Connected Capabilty Fund. PI.

Previous projects

  • Flood-PREPARED: Predicting Rainfall Events by Physical Analytics of REaltime Data (NE/P017134/1). Researcher.
  • TENDERLY: Towards END-to End flood forecasting and a tool for ReaL-time catchment susceptibilitY (NE/K008781/1). Researcher.
  • SINATRA: Susceptibility of catchments to INTense Rainfall and flooding. NERC Flooding from Intense Rainfall programme (NE/K008781/1). Researcher.
  • Numerical and Laboratory Modelling Study of Meteo-Tsunamis and Harbour Resonance. Royal Society International Exchanges 2013 NSFC (IE131297). Researcher.
  • Online Social Networks (OSNs) Based System for Flood Prediction and Management (EP/K003593/1). Researcher.
  • Small items of research equipment at Newcastle University: Developing the future research base in Healthcare Technologies, Sustainability and Digital Economy (SIREN) (EP/K031678/1).


Undergraduate teaching

  • CEG3305 Computational Engineering Analysis. Lead for water components.