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Postgraduate research project

Improved prediction and forecasting of coastal compound flood hazard around the UK

Fully funded (UK and international)
Type of degree
Doctor of Philosophy
Entry requirements
2:1 honours degree View full entry requirements
Faculty graduate school
Faculty of Environmental and Life Sciences
Closing date

About the project

In low-lying coastal regions, flooding often arises from more than one drive such as oceanographic, fluvial or pluvial, a phenomenon that is known as ‘compound flooding’. This PhD will use a new km-scale system coupling atmosphere, land, waves and ocean. Modelling experiments across weather and climate timescales will further our understanding and improve the prediction of compound events and their potential changes in the future.

Coastal hazards such as estuarine flooding, coastal overtopping or coastal erosion, mainly occur in response to meteorological events that drive multiple hazards, such as strong winds, heavy rain, storm surge, high waves or high river flows. Current guidance and coastal flood prediction generally doesn’t account for interdependencies and potential non-linear amplification of these hazards. 

Understanding both the present-day combined multi-hazard flood risk and the potential changes under future sea-level rise and changes in storminess are fundamental to robust coastal adaptation planning. This PhD will gain new insight into past multi-hazard dependencies and their future evolution, as well as define multi-hazard thresholds for weather forecasting, by answering these questions:

  • what are the relationships between tides, waves, storm surges and river flows observed in the historical past?
  • how important are the interactions between these flood hazard drivers in modifying the overall risk?
  • how might these drivers and their interactions change under future sea-level rise?
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