School of Engineering

Staff Profile

Dr Sarah Dunn

Lecturer in Structural Engineering



I am a civil and structural engineer, with an interest in the resilience of our modern communities.  The majority of my research focuses on the resilience of our infrastructure systems - with the aim of improving the resilience of our communities through the adaptation of their underpinning infrastructure systems.  I am interested in developing techniques that can recognise vulnerable areas within infrastructure systems, identify fragile system architectures and also establish methods that can help to protect them from hazard.

Roles and Responsibilities

Deputy Director for Postgraduate Studies (School of Engineering)


PhD in Civil Engineering (Newcastle University - Feb 2014) - Thesis Title "An Investigation to Improve Community Resilience using Network Graph Analysis of Infrastructure Systems"

MEng in Civil and Structural Engineering (Newcastle University - Sept 2010) (1st Class (Hons))

Area of Expertise

Materials and Manufacturing


2016 Teaching Excellence Awards (TEAs):

  • Taught Supervisor of the Year (Shortlisted)
  • Overall Contribution to Outstanding Practice (Shortlisted)


Google Scholar Profile:

LinkedIn Profile:

ResearchGate Profile:


Research Interests

critical infrastructure, resilience, disaster management, network graph theory, resilient communities, network reliability

PhD Supervision

Beth Barnes (start Sept 2016, currently on maternity leave) - Development of a Modelling Framework to Improve Mitigation Methods and Contingency Planning for Emergency Scenario (Principal Supervisor)

Louise Westoby (start Jan 2017) - The Road to Recovery: Understanding the Process of Rebuilding Seismic Resistant Schools in Nepal (Principal Supervisor)

Xiaoyan Zhang (start Sept 2018) - A computational model incorporating individual and social behaviour for building emergency evacuation

John Naylor (start Jan 2019, part-time) - How can architectures increase the use of full-culm bamboo to provide adequate urban housing in tropical developing economies? (co-supervised with School of Architecture)

Hanan Tamimi (start Sept 2019) - (co-supervised with School of Computing)

Research Funding

  • Jan 2020 - Nov 2020: "Averted!", gaming app to challenge perception of engineering in young people: EPSRC, PI, £30,000
  • May 2017 - Aug 2019: "Emergency Resource Location-Allocation and Deployment (eROAD) too": Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), PI, £121,339
  • Feb 2016 - Jan 2018: "Realtime assessments of wind related damage to electricity infrastructure": Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), CoI, £177,321


Member of the EPSRC Early Career Forum (Engineering) - from June 2018


Undergraduate Teaching

ENG1002: Sustainable Design Creativity and Professionalism

ENG1007: Mechanics 1

CEG8099: Supervision of undergraduate Stage 4 projects