Global Challenges Academy

Living Deltas

UKRI GCRF Living Deltas Hub

  • Goal 1: No poverty
  • Goal 2: Zero Hunger
  • Goal 3: Good Health & Well Being
  • Goal 5: Gender Equality
  • Goal 6: Clean Water and Sanitation
  • Region: South East Asia

Over half a billion people live on the world’s river deltas - only 1% of the global land area. This has led to tension between growth and development of human communities and the natural processes of river deltas. While deltas are considered important ‘global food baskets’ they are highly vulnerable to food insecurity and environmental degradation.

How we are meeting this challenge

The Living Deltas Research Hub is funded for five years (2019-2024) and operates across four delta systems – Red River, Mekong deltas in Vietnam; the Ganges-Brahmaputra-Meghna system in Bangladesh and India.  We call these ‘social-ecological systems.’

  • Facilitate the promotion of the SDGs in Red River, Mekong and the Ganges-Brahmaputra-Meghna Deltas using natural-cultural heritage understandings.
  • Study the relationships between natural-cultural and intangible-tangible heritage resources in delta case studies. 
  • Transforming policy and practice on the basis of our new approaches to understanding delta change in South and Southeast Asia.
  • Confronting significant challenges facing social-ecological delta systems in a transdisciplinary way that responds to the interlinked agenda of the SDGs.  
  • Establishing patterns of severity and rate of environmental change to identify key pressure points on vulnerable deltas, and explore interconnections between tangible and intangible national-cultural heritage resources.
  • Building equitable partnerships with delta communities, NGOs, government departments, academics and businesses to scope, map, and research human relationships with deltas and the impacts they have on them.
SDGs focus for the Living Deltas Hub.
Work Packages of the Living Deltas Hub

Who will benefit

Disadvantaged communities that live in or near deltas, and benefit government at all levels, community organisations, women and youth groups, SME businesses, and NGOs in South East Asia, including the countries of Cambodia, Laos, Mynamar, Thailand and Vietnam. 

Our team

  • Principal Investigator: Prof Andy Large, Newcastle University (Professor in River Science
  • Dr Andy Henderson, Newcastle University (Reader in Physical Geography)
  • Dr Graham Long, Newcastle University
  • Professor Susan Chilton, Newcastle University
  • Professor Graham Smith, Newcastle University (Heritage@Newcastle)
  • Professor Hayley Fowler, Newcastle University (Anthropocene Research Group)
  • Dr Maggie Roe, Newcastle University (Heritage@Newcastle & Anthropocene Research Group)
  • Dr Andy Law, Newcastle University (Heritage@Newcastle & Anthropocene Research Group)
  • Professor Helen Berry, Newcastle University (Heritage@Newcastle & Anthropocene Research Group)
  • Professor Fabrice Renaud, University of Glasgow
  • Dr Sylvia Szabo, AIT Bangkok, Thailand
  • Dr Nga Dao, York University, Canada
  • Professor Shah Alam Khan, BUET, Bangladesh
  • Dr Zita Sebesvari, United Nations University, Bonn
  • Professor Matt Ballie-Smith, Northumbria University
  • Dr Kien Van Nguyen, An Giang University, Vietnam
  • Professor Louise Bracken, Durham University
  • Professor Phil Barker, University of Lancaster
  • Professor Qiuhua Liang, Loughborough University
  • Professor Efi Foufoula-Georgiou, University of California, Irvine, USA
  • Dr Trinh Anh Duc, VINACOM, Vietnam
  • Dr Hue Le, CRES, Hanoi, Vietnam
  • Professor Souvanic Roy, IIEST, Kolkata, India
  • Professor  Tuhin Ghosh, Jadavpur University, India

Key contact

Dr Andy Large

Further information

Living Deltas UKRI GCRF Hub