Anna Whitford

PhD Researcher

I graduated from UCL in 2018 with an MSc in Geophysical Hazards. I am now based in the Water Group at Newcastle University, supervised by Prof Hayley Fowler and Dr Stephen Blenkinsop.

Research interests:

My research interests include extreme rainfall and flash flooding, atmospheric drivers of such events, forecasting of extreme rainfall  and the socioeconomic impacts these events have on effected communities. I am also interested in the use of forecast-based financing as a tool to prepare for and reduce the negative impacts of natural hazards.

My PhD project is centred around using a newly developed sub-daily rainfall dataset to investigate extreme rainfall in Europe. The aim of the project is to explore the dynamical drivers of short-duration extreme rainfall events and their potential to be used as forecasting tools. By developing a detailed understanding of sub-daily rainfall characteristics in Europe (creating a climatology of sub-daily rainfall alongside extreme value analysis) an assessment of the dynamical drivers of the extreme events can be made (using synoptic data), allowing the identification of atmospheric variables which could be utilised to improve the forecasting of short-duration extreme rainfall events.


I have a first class BSc in Geology from the University of Durham. Prior to starting my PhD I worked as a researcher on a GCRF funded project at Durham, which included organising and chairing a research meeting on ‘climate change impacts on water quality in Kazakhstan’ which was held in Nur-Sultan, Kazakhstan.