Contact Professor Ian Holman

Areas of expertise

  • Computing, Simulation & Modelling
  • Natural Capital
  • Sustainable Land Systems
  • Water Science and Engineering


Ian Holman is Professor of Integrated Land and Water Management at Cranfield University where he leads the Centre for Water, Environment and Development. His research over the past 25 years has taken a systems-based approach to understanding the importance of changes in land use and land management at catchment to continental scales on natural capital and ecosystem services, including water regulation, water purification and food production. He brings interdisciplinary hydrogeological, spatial pedology and agricultural expertise to sustainable land and water resource management and climate change impacts and adaptation research in the UK, Europe and internationally for a range of Governmental, non-governmental and commercial organisations.

Research opportunities

Professor Holman's research focusses on:

1) Integrated modelling of land and water systems under current and future climate and socio-economic conditions

2) Development of innovative approaches to agricultural water management to increase water security and drought resilience

3) Better understanding the water-related challenges and opportunities for improved lowland peat management to reduce greenhouse gas emissions

Current activities

Professor Holman is the Cranfield Principal Investigator (PI) on a number of recent and ongoing major projects relating to water and land resources, including:

Assessing the water-related challenges and opportunities for lowland peat re-wetting to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in England (Defra, Environment Agency)

Modelling of post-Brexit agricultural support policy (Defra and Welsh Government)

Development of a prototype rainwater harvesting decision support tool to reduce water and climate-related risks in UK agriculture and horticulture (Innovate UK)

Assessing the potential for rainwater harvesting within non-domestic buildings across the Oxford to Cambridge geography (Environment Agency)


Recent clients have included:

Research Councils (NERC, BBSRC and EPSRC)

UK Government departments, including Defra and DFID

Welsh Government

European Commission (FP7 and DG Environment)

Environment Agency

Broads Authority

Royal Society for the Protection of Birds.


Articles In Journals

Conference Papers