Cross-cutting themes

Sustainability, resilience and climate change

Sustainability of current and future built infrastructure and understanding the role of civil engineering in our future potential to adapt to and mitigate climate change is a key element in many of our research projects. We collaborate with a range of other disciplines to understand sustainability from social, technical and economic perspectives. 

Our expertise include: environmental impact assessment; cost-benefit; optimisation; water and carbon footprinting; lifecycle assessment; uncertainty; metrics and benchmarking; materials flow analysis.

Environment 

The relationships between built infrastructure and the natural environment are a significant part of our research including assessing and monitoring environmental impacts, mitigation techniques to deal with current and past contamination of the environment and new approaches to minimise future negative impacts of human development on the environment. 

Particular areas include: bioremediation of contaminated land and groundwater; urban air pollution and traffic flows; recovery of energy, materials and nutrients from waste streams; flood risk modelling.

Project management

We have a long standing reputation for our research in engineering project management, and work closely with engineering companies and government at a national and international level. Our research ranges from the fundamental approaches to application supporting live engineering construction projects, government policies and infrastructure investment planning. This includes the development of the Project Initiation Routemap, a process for optimising the delivery environment for major projects that has been applied on major national programmes including Crossrail, HS2, London Underground and Thames Tidway Tunnel.

Our research areas include: decision making; energy infrastructure; risk; MEGA projects; transport; corruption; asset management; construction management. 

Numerical modelling 

Numerical modelling is a significant research strength, with application across a diverse range of areas including structural performance of buildings, flood risk analysis, ventilation and indoor air quality, carbon capture and storage and geo-thermal and geo-environmental engineering. Our interests include both development of numerical modelling methods and software as well as application to civil and environmental engineering problems. 

Our expertise include: computational fluid dynamics; structural analysis; optimisation; stochastic modelling; fluid structure interaction; discrete element modelling; river models. 

Monitoring and sensing

We have expertise in the application of monitoring and sensing in full scale applications across a range of areas including structural performance, energy, environmental pollution and air quality. By combining with modelling and laboratory data we are able to bring new insight into the performance and impact of infrastructure and its future sustainability and resilience. 

Specific capabilities include: indoor air quality; bioaerosol sampling; structural health monitoring; LIDAR; sensor development; infrastructure robotics.