climate impact forecasting for slopes
 CLIFFS  is an EPSRC-funded network based at Loughborough University aiming to bring together  academics, R&D agencies, stakeholders, consultants and climate specialists to improve  forecasting of slope instability in the context of progressive climate change



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Bushmills PICNIC




Collaboration Project, Bushmills Meeting, 9th-10th July



Attendees: Paul Hughes, Stephanie Glendinning, Derek Clarke, William Powrie, Joel Smethurst, Tom Dijkstra, David Hughes



The Project


Where are our students/RAs going on their placements, what will they be doing there?

Newcastle to send Rob Flory to Mott’s for 2 months, Paul Hughes to GEO Observations for 6 weeks, Ruth Starr-Keddle to  Highways Agency for 2 months, placement for Owen Davies not yet arranged. All placement timetables yet to be arranged.

      Southampton to split salary and travel expenses between several researchers, will provide details as plans firm up.

Belfast, awaiting confirmation of available funds.


How are we going to manage the project?

      Paul Hughes to co-ordinate, write notes and  take minutes etc

Meetings will be held approx every 3 months each participating institution will take turns to “host” (meetings do not have to    be held at the hosting institution).

      Webforums to be used for additional meetings, using the CLIFFS network website as the gateway. Myspace will be used to host the webforum.

      PH to contact David Boardman to arrange use of KTN web capability as set out in cfs.

      Each participating researcher will be asked to produce a one page summary of their involvement in the project (PH will create a template for this).

      An International seminar will be held in March 2009 with several smaller more focussed seminars held during course of project.


How can we utilise this project to get further funding? / How do we mesh this project with next stage/CLIFFS?

      Will link up with final CLIFFS seminar

      Will produce conceptual paper(s) out of this project to be published in  ICE proceedings or ASCE journals. An additional paper to be produced covering experience/expertise in slope monitoring.

      Focus on our expertise as a team, form a group and think of a name

      We should try to focus on engineered slopes, keep climate change as part of the title (though being wary of “climate change fatigue”) and use CLIFFS as the corporate front for the group.

      Look at getting television involvement for the trips (SG to supply contact at BBC’s details to TD).

      Try and get some numbers for how much transport delays cost the UK (ALL)



Travel arrangements


How much money do we have, what are we allowed to spend it on, can we stretch it further?

See attached spreadsheet funding amounts. Each institution should check that their award letter matches this.

      It may be possible to economise on some parts of the trips but this saving is likely to be swallowed up if we extend the amount of time we spend in each place.


Where have we planned to go? Who wants to go where? Where else would we like to go?

Singapore, China, Canada, South Africa, France, Spain (European trips may change as more contacts become available). 

      The China trip will start by going to the 10th International symposium on Landsides and Engineered slopes from the 30th June to July 4th, the group will then split, some will go to Shanghai and Zhejiang University to see Tony Zhan (PH and SG to organise) others will go to Lanzhou, (TD to organise).


      We should add a trip to Hong Kong on the back of the Singapore trip (WP to approach HK contacts; PH to chase David Toll for Singapore visit dates and itinery).


      Bordeaux trip (DC to look into)


      Barcelona (SG to look into)


      TD will check out his French contacts for a possible visit.



Are there any conferences we want to go to? How do we link them in?


      Canadian Geotechnical Conf, Edmonton September 21-24 2008 (DH to provide more details) TD to start drafting, abstract for Jan 2008. Will precede conference by visit to Vancouver forestry commission.


Who will take charge of which trips?


      Each institution will take responsibility for running the trips to see their contacts


        Newcastle        -> Singapore and China, Spain

        Belfast -> Canada

        Southampton    -> South Africa, France


(European trips may change as more contacts become available)


Fund sharing.


      Each institution will report on their spending at quarterly meetings, after 12 months will have a review.



Journal outputs


  • Outputs from final seminar into QJEGH (Neil to approach editorial board)

  • Journal paper on international best practice

  • conference papers whilst on visits

  • General report on how to go about planning, installing, using instrumentation, long term monitoring.

  • Additional papers as a result of industrial secondments.


Any other business


  • Next meeting, Isle of Wight or European destination?  All to supply availability in September.

  • PH to create a calendar where participants can mark their availability and trips can be planned. Everyone should be able to add their data to the calendar.

  • We should apply for more funding to bring contacts back over here to participate in seminars etc.


 List of actions



Contact David Boardman r.e. KTN web facilities

Create template for researcher project contribution summaries

Organise trip to China with SG

Chase David Toll for Singapore trip dates and itinery

Create project calendar and circulate



Send BBC contact details to TD

Organise trip to China with PH



Create gateway for collaboration project on CLIFFS website

Organise Lanzhou visit during China trip

Approach french contacts about possible visit

Begin drafting paper for Can Geotch Conf, abstract for Jan 2008



Approach QJEGH editorial board about publishing outputs from final seminar in March 2009



Approach Hong Kong contacts about possible visit



Approach Bordeaux contacts about visit



Check award letter figures against planning spreadsheet

Think of a good name for our group

Try and get some numbers for how much transport delays cost the UK

Each institution to report on spending at each quarterly meeting

Supply availability for IOW or other European meeting in September 2008

Add availability data to project calendar


core partners



British Waterways

CF Skanska



Highways Agency

Isle of Wight Council

Mott MacDonald



and Universities of:



Imperial College




Nottingham Trent

Queen's Belfast