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2013 Demonstration Test Catchment Conference and Seminar

A two day conference and seminar on 21 and 22 January 2013 held at Mary Sumner House, London provided policymakers, delivery agencies and land and water and catchment managers with an opportunity to learn about the latest research and to discuss the findings from the three Demonstration Test Catchments. Conference proceedings, including the programme, abstract and presentations are available to download here…

Full Programme


Day 1 Presentations     The first two years

Setting the Scene

Check: “What’s the Problem” – understanding the situation 

Plan: The Measures – which ones, where and how much? 

Do: Overcoming the barriers of acceptance and take-up 

 Review: Do measures work? – evaluating and transferring results 

 Day 2    The next two years


Policy and Practice Note: What part are the Demonstration Test Catchments playing in addressing water pollution?

The second policy and practice note in the DTC series provides a brief introduction to the three demonstration test catchments, the pollution problems in each catchment and some of the potential solutions being trialled.  It may be downloaded here or for a hard copy please email Anne Liddon.

The first policy and practice note in the series is also available to download  “Creating and applying robust information resources for catchment management” Note No. 01.



DTC 2013 Conference Alert: Preliminary results from the DTC Research Platform

Demonstrating Test Catchments

January 21st and 22nd 2013

Mary Sumner House, Meeting Rooms

24 Tufton St, London SW1P 3RB

This two day conference and seminar event will offer the opportunity for policy makers, delivery agencies, land and water managers and catchment managers to learn about the catchment scale water quality and land management research currently underway in the Defra-funded Demonstration Test Catchments research platform.

Day one (10-5 pm) –DTC the Last Two Years  – will provide an overview of the catchment scale research and examples of the lessons learned so far, with opportunities for questions, discussion and accessing further details throughout. It will be structured into 4 sections:

  • Understanding the problem
  • Implementing Measures
  • Acceptance and take-up
  • Evaluating success

Day two (10- 1 pm) – DTC the Next Two Years – will provide an opportunity for more in-depth discussions led by Defra and the EA between the science research teams and stakeholders concerned with water quality.  The intention is to develop a dialogue and help guide future work in the DTC (and related) research platforms in the context of the existing and emerging policy approaches and delivery challenges in:

  • Designing water quality monitoring approaches
  • Engaging stakeholders in decision-making at catchment scales
  • Understanding diffuse pollution risk: what does DTC research tell us about the spatial and temporal factors at play in the mobilisation, transport and impact of diffuse pollution?
  • Planning and implementing diffuse pollution mitigation measures
  • Analysis of farm practice data from baseline surveys – what does it tell us about farming/farm advisory services/ the culture of farming and future farm security
  • Decision support tools and water quality modelling – future needs

The workshop is free but numbers are limited so please contact Bob Harris at to register and for further details.

Land Use and Water Quality Conference Abstract Alert

Abstract deadline:  20 October 2012




This conference aims to discuss the entire policy cycle for water quality improvement. This cycle includes problem recognition, formulation of technical options, the process of policy development, interaction with policy makers, stakeholders and pressure groups, policy implementation, monitoring and research. This conference also aims to intensify contacts, on the one hand, between scientists with a background in natural sciences and scientists with a background in social and economic sciences and, on the other hand, between scientists, water managers and policy makers. In short, the objectives are:

–  to provide forum for exchange of scientific knowledge, research on system knowledge, modelling and uncertainty;
–  to discuss the entire policy cycle for water quality improvement;
–  to intensify contacts (a) between soil/water related scientists, agro related scientists, social scientists, ecological scientists and economists, and (b) between scientists, water managers and policy makers.

Target groups and keywords
Target groups are scientists, managers and policy makers involved in the policy cycle for water quality improvement. It includes activities characterised by the following keywords: agronomy, agro-economics, agro-sociology, water management, water policy, hydrology, aquatic ecosystems, terrestrial ecosystems, unsaturated zone, groundwater, surface waters, drinking water, monitoring, modelling, water quality, nutrients, agro-chemicals.

Contributions are solicited according to the following themes, themes A through F.

A.. Increasing system knowledge: research to increase understanding and improving modelling of the hydro(geo)logical, geochemical and biochemical reality
B.. Impact of climate change and weather variability: assessment of effect on groundwater and surface water quality and distinguishing from effect of human behaviour
C.. Assessment of national policy: assessment of effects of programmes of measures on water quality on a regional and national scale
D.. Field research and data interpretation: research (monitoring and modelling) at plot and field scale for quantifying effects of farming practices and changes in land use
E.. Managing protected areas: use of monitoring and modelling to improve water quality for drinking water supply areas and habitat and species protection areas
F.. Decision-making and implementation: role of policy, stakeholder and science in decision-making, and social and economic incentives and constraints for implementation (carrots and sticks)

For topics relevant these themes we refer to

FURTHER INFORMATION: please feel free to contact the Organising Committee:
– Dico Fraters,
– Karel Kovar,

More information is on


Take part in survey to identify global water research questions

In 2009, water@leeds organised a workshop to identify the priority water research questions for the UK – this led to the publication of a paper in the journal Science of the Total Environment*. Taking this idea to a global level, water@leeds has launched a survey to try and identify the global water research questions – and YOUR HELP IS NEEDED! This is an ambitious project and we require as many responses from around the world as possible. Please contribute to the survey and pass the details onto your contacts.

If you have further questions please contact Rebecca Slack


*Brown, L.E., Mitchell, G., Holden, J., Wright, N., Beharry-Borg, N., Berry, G., Brierley, B., Chapman, P., Clarke, S., Cotton, L., Davies, R.J., Dobson, M., Dollar, E., Elfleet, M., Fletcher, M., Folkard, A., Foster, J., Griffiths, M., Hanlon, A., Hildon, S., Hiley, P., Hillis, P., Hoseason, J., Johnston, K., Kay, P., McDonald, A., Parrot, A., Philips, M., Powell, A., Ponton, G., Slack, R.J., Sleigh, A., Spray, C., Tapley, K., Underhill, R. & Woulds, C. (2010) Priority water research questions as determined by UK practitioners and policy-makers. Science of the Total Environment  409: 261-271

Natural Environment 2012: Balancing Nature, Society and the Economy Conference and Exhibition

Govtoday presents Natural Environment 2012: Balancing Nature, Society and the Economy Conference and Exhibition, which will be held on the 12th June 2012 at the prestigious Brewery Conference Centre, London.

Natural Environment 2012: Balancing Nature, Society and the Economy will examine the first White Paper for over 20 years on the Natural Environment. ‘The Natural Choice: securing the value of nature’ was launched on the 7th June 2011 by the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, Caroline Spelman MP, and placed the value of nature at the centre of choices that the nation must take.

Natural Environment 2012: Balancing Nature, Society and the Economy Conference and Exhibition will examine the Government’s proposals, debate the methodology and question the actions to protect the environment for future generations. It will look at strengthening the economy in a environmentally sustainable way to improve quality of life and well-being, and will highlight the requirements for industry participation, as well as the pivotal role that this sector will play in the meeting of targets.

For further information go to

To book your place please call 0161 238 8881 or email  quoting ref CAM6



The JBA Trust will be hosting a workshop on river restoration at the University of Gloucestershire on 10th and 11th of May 2012. This event will cover important restoration opportunities linked to the Defra Catchment Restoration Fund and will cover obstruction removal/modification, river and floodplain reconnection, urban channel restoration and river naturalisation.

For further information about the workshop please follow this link to the JBA website.