Data Science of the Natural Environment

This bold collaboration between Lancaster University and the Centre for Ecology & Hydrology will co-create and deploy a data science of the natural environment.

Students in an ice cave


Driven by grand challenges of environmental science, co-designed with an extensive range of key stakeholders, our multi-disciplinary team of internationally-renowned data and environmental scientists will develop a broad and unique range of new data science techniques, fused with environmental models in an integrated framework to enable better-informed decision-making around the most pressing challenges faced by society.

Our People

We bring together world-leading expertise in the fields of data and environmental science.

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Our Research

Motivating Challenges

  • Ice Sheet Melt Prediction

    Accurate predictions of ice sheet change are crucial in planning global sea level adaptation and mitigation measures.

  • Air Quality Modelling

    Effective air quality modelling and mitigation is necessary to reduce the 3 million global deaths per year attributable to this cause.

  • Land Use Change

    In a changing climate, land use decisions must be made between food, timber, energy, recreation, urban settlement, employment and aesthetic benefits.

Methodological Themes

  • Integrated Statistical Modelling

    This theme will develop a suite of inference and prediction techniques for environmental problems, bringing together existing technology and new developments in a modular framework.

  • Machine Learning and Decision-Making

    We will enhance model-based statistics with modern machine learning techniques to ensure they scale to modern heterogeneous data sources and end-user requirements.

  • Virtual Lab Development

    This theme will focus on the development and deployment of virtual labs as a key instantiation of the integration of heterogeneous data and models that is central to our project.

Working in Partnership

Data Science for the Natural Environment is a bold collaboration between Lancaster University and the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology.