Contact Dr Monica Rivas Casado

Areas of expertise

  • Digital Agriculture
  • Environmental Policy
  • Monitoring and Environmental Informatics
  • Natural Capital
  • Water Science and Engineering


Dr Monica Rivas Casado is a Senior Lecturer in Integrated Environmental Monitoring with expertise in the application of statistics to environmental data. Her academic career has been built around the integration of emerging technologies, advanced statistics and environmental engineering for the design of robust monitoring strategies.

Monica has an MSc in Environmental Water Management and a PhD in applied geostatistics from Cranfield. She is a Chartered Environmentalist (CEnv), a Chartered Scientist (CSci), a Chartered Forestry Engineer and a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA). She holds a Postgraduate Certificate (PGCert) in teaching and learning and a National Examination Board in Occupational Safety and Health (NEBOSH) qualification. Monica is a fully qualified RPQs (drone) pilot.

Current activities

Monica is currently leading Research Council (RCUK) and industry funded projects on the use of emerging technologies and statistical science for robust environmental monitoring. This includes the use of drones for jellyfish and seaweed bloom monitoring near coastal nuclear power plants (EPSRC/EDF Energy), drones for flood and catastrophe extent mapping and damage assessment (NERC/EPSRC), autonomous on-water vehicles for robust hydromorphological characterisation (EPSRC) and floodplain forest restoration monitoring (EPSRC). Further research activity includes underwater vehicles for coral reef habitat identification and ecosystem service quantification. She is the Cranfield lead for the Building Resilience Into Risk Management (BRIM) EPSRC Grand-Challenge network (2015-2019).

Previously, she has lead research activity on geostatistical science for the design of monitoring programmes for mycotoxins and successfully contributed and delivered RCUK research on ecosystem services science (EnergyScapes, NERC). She has collaborated with a vast array of user organisations on: (i) the design of biodiversity monitoring programmes within Integrated Biodiversity Delivery Areas, (ii) the quantification of the effect of forest management practices on soil carbon sequestration and (iii) the assessment of land use dynamics in Europe, amongst others. Her work has been used as a reference for best practice guideline development and policy implementation.

During her 10 month secondment with Government (Department for Business Innovation and Skills, Government for Science, 2014-2015) she provided advice and guidance on emerging technologies to different Ministerial Departments, including Cabinet Office. 


  • Department for Business Innovation and Skills (BIS)
  • Government Office for Science (GO-Science)
  • Cabinet Office (CO)
  • Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl)
  • Electricite de France Group
  • Satellite Applications Catapult
  • Environment Agency (EA)
  • The Parks Trust
  • Magellium Ltd
  • Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra)
  • Centre for Ecology and Hydrology (CEH)
  • Yorkshire Water
  • Natural England
  • Joint Nature Conservation Committee (JNCC)
  • Forestry Comission
  • European Forest Institute 
  • The Institute of European Environmental Policy
  • Joint Research Centre (JRC) European Commission
  • Scotland and Northern Ireland Forum for Environmental Research (SNIFFER)
  • Food Standard Agency (FSA)
  • Adas
  • Research Councils: NERC, EPSRC, BBSRC and ESRC.


Articles In Journals

Conference Papers

  • Rivas Casado M, Bellamy P, White S, Maddock I, Dunbar M & Booker D (2005) Defining spatial and temporal hydromorphological sampling strategies for the Leigh Brook river site. In: COST 626 European Aquatic Modelling Network, Silkeborg, 19 May 2005.
  • Borsanyi P, Dunbar M, Booker D, Rivas Casado M & Alfredsen K (2005) The hydromorphological picture of meso-scale units of rivers. In: COST 626 European Aquatic Modelling Network, Silkeborg, 19 May 2005.
  • Rivas Casado M, Bellamy PH, White SM, Dunbar M & Booker D (2004) Defining hydromorphological sampling strategies for ecological assessment. In: Fifth International Symposium on Ecohydraulics. Aquatic Habitats: Analysis & Restoration, Madrid, 12 September 2004.


  • Rivas Casado M, Woodget A, Ballesteros Gonzalez R, Maddock I & Leinster P (2020) Unmanned aerial vehicles for riverine environments. In: Unmanned Aerial Remote Sensing: UAS for Environmental Applications, CRC Press.
  • Rivas Casado M, Palma M & Leinster P (2020) Autonomous systems for the environmental characterization of lagoons. In: Lagoon Environments Around the World - A Scientific Perspective, InTech Open.
  • Rivas Casado M (eds), (2019) Novel Advances in Aquatic Vegetation Monitoring in Ocean, Lakes and Rivers, MDPI.
  • Mcilwaine B, Rivas Casado M & Leinster P (2019) Using 1st derivative reflectance signatures within a remote sensing framework to identify macroalgae in marine environments. In: Novel Advances in Aquatic Vegetation Monitoring in Ocean, Lakes and Rivers, p. 43-65.
  • Rivas Casado M, Corstanje R, Bellamy P & Marchant B (2013) Issues of sampling design in wetlands. In: Methods in Biogeochemistry of Wetlands. DeLaune RD, Reddy KR, Richardson CJ, Megonigal JP (ed.), Soil Science Society of America, Madison, Wisconsin, USA., p. 1-11.
  • Mayr T, Rivas Casado M, Bellamy P, Palmer R, Zawadzka J & Corstanje R (2010) Two methods for using legacy data in digital soil mapping. In: Digital soil mapping: bridging research, environmental application, and operation. Boettinger JL, Howell DW, Moore AC, Hartemink AE, Kienast-Brown S (ed.), Dordrecht, The Netherlands: Springer, p. 191-202.