Scholarship code CU2.02

Development of innovative sustainable strategies for pluvial flooding risk management

  • Reference person
    Giuseppe Tito
  • Host University/Institute
    Università degli Studi di Messina
  • Internship
  • Research Keywords
    Pluvial flooding
    Resilience and risk impact
    Sustainable engineering
  • Reference ERCs
    PE8_11 Environmental engineering, e.g. sustainable design, waste and water treatment, recycling, regeneration or recovery of compounds, carbon capture & storage
    SH7_6 Environmental and climate change, societal impact and policy
    PE10_17 Hydrology, hydrogeology, engineering and environmental geology, water and soil pollution
  • Reference SDGs
    GOAL 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities
    GOAL 13: Climate Action


The growing complexity of urban systems and the uncertainty associated with flood risk, exacerbated by climate change, pose serious challenges to the sustainability of our communities.Therefore, it appears more urgent than ever to develop innovative and sustainable strategies for the management of flood risk, in order to increase the socio-economic resilience of urban communities with regard to the disastrous effects resulting from extreme hydro-meteorological events. For this purpose, the proposed research topic intends to focus on the development of a methodological framework for modelling the cascade effects of pluvial flooding events, through the simulation of risk scenarios for the urban population,infrastructures, and socio-economic systems, capable to take into account also all the uncertainties. Since understanding the potential changes, both in the extent of extreme rainfall and in the characteristics of the urban areas, is fundamental for the design of sustainable urban drainage systems capable of mitigating the effects of pluvial flooding events, particular attention will be paid to the estimation of possible future changes in intense rainfall, as well as the implementation of measures aimed at minimizing soil imperviousness and sealing through infiltration, retention and temporary detention of water. This will enable a step change in the management of pluvial flooding improving understanding of the potential impacts and quicker recovery of urban communities.

Suggested skills:

The ideal candidate should have a strong background in civil and environmental studies, specifically in the field of pluvial flooding, sustainable urban drainage systems, flood vulnerability and damage evaluation. Familiarity with programming languages such as MATLAB,R, C++ and commercial software as EPA-SWMM, HEC-RAS, as experiences in statistics, data analysis and socio-economic modelling will be an added value.Fluency in English, both written and spoken is recommended. Finally the candidate should be strongly motivated to work in a collaborative environment,with an inter-disciplinary approach. Last but not least, willingness to international mobility is required.

Research team and environment

The research activity will take place at the Department of Engineering within the Research Group of Water Engineering and Hydrology coordinated by Prof. Giuseppe T. Aronica. The Group includes an Associate Professor, two post-doc researchers and five Ph.D students; the research activities cover research topics related to flood risk management,sustainable urban drainage systems, pluvial flooding, stochastic hydrology and water resources management. These activities are supported by many national and international research projects, consultancies for Public Agencies and Private Companies. The Research Group have strong collaborations with Italian and international Universities