A pump in a stream provides water to a pivot irrigation system that waters a field of crops.

Civil & Environmental Engineering Environmental engineering

The environment is a complex system. Our environmental engineering research provides the knowledge base and experience to bring together multiple scientific disciplines to understand and manage environmental issues.

Research is carried out within the Environment Research Group in the Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering.  Our researchers are highly skilled with a collection of engineers, scientists and social scientists.  Together they strive for:

  • sustainability of natural resources
  • a better understanding of human impact on the environment
  • an improvement of the quality of life for everyone locally, nationally and internationally 

As a research department we're involved in environmental projects both locally and internationally. We often work collaboratively with universities, councils and industry in both Scotland and the EU to provide a service to our community and to keep our research relevant and up-to-date.  

Our researchers have an international focus, including recent activity in Malawi, Kenya, Swaziland, Thailand, Cuba, Brazil, United States and Canada.

Key research areas

Integrated water resource management

Our research at Strathclyde is focused on:

  • Water resources (hydrogeology)
  • Water infrastructure
  • Water policy (trans-boundary aquifers)
  • Water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH)

Environmental science & engineering

This research area combines fundamental science and engineering approaches to understand field-scale behaviour of chemical and biological processes in the environment.

International development

International development research at Strathclyde is focused on:

  • Water resources (hydrogeology)
  • Water infrastructure
  • Water policy (trans-boundary aquifers)
  • Water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH)

Environmental assessment

Environmental assessment is the process of identifying, evaluating, and mitigating the biophysical, social, health, cultural and other relevant effects of development proposals prior to major decisions being taken and commitments made. The emphasis is on prevention.

We have expertise in the assessment of impacts both at strategic and project level. There are strong links with climate change research. Our research work focuses on the use of environmental assessment as a design tool and contributing to improvements.

Modelling travel behaviour

We seek to understand how and in what way factors associated with the built environment, technology and society influence travel behaviour. This research has important implications for the future development of cities.


Our laboratories have been designed around the needs of researchers and have allowed us to extend and diversify our research effort.

High-technological instrumentation and space are available to perform analytical measurements associated with investigations in marine and freshwater quality, air quality, solid and hazardous wastes, and environmental microbiology.