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Sue White, 13 August 1957 - 15 March 2014.


Professor Sue White was a Chartered Civil Engineer with a PhD in Physical Geography who specialised in her career in river and coastal hydraulics and catchment hydrology. Prof. White had over 25 years of experience in a wide range of projects relating to research and development in catchment and river process models, with particular reference to catchment planning, erosion, sediment and pollutant transport, sedimentation and hydro-ecology. As part of this work she developed a keen interest in spatio-temporal variation in land use and management and hydrological processes. Particular interests included catchment level water balance/soil moisture variation and identification of sources of sediment and pollutants within catchment systems. Prof. White worked on projects in a range of countries including Malawi, Botswana, Kenya, Nepal, India, the Philippines, Indonesia, Chile, Peru, Italy, and Greece. She was mainly located in the UK but also spent 3 years working in Spain for the National Research Council (Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas).

Following a degree in Civil Engineering (Liverpool) and an MSc in Water Resources Technology (Birmingham), Sue White joined Hydraulics Research in Wallingford in 1979 and carried out research and training related to improving water sources and conserving soil for community needs in Asia, Africa, and India. She completed her PhD on the “Estimation of sediment yield from limited data sets: A case study from the Philippines” (Exeter). By that time, her strong expertise in water resources and importance of sediment yield, both from an academic perspective and direct understanding of community needs, led her to a 3 year appointment at the Pyrenean Institute of Ecology in Zaragoza, Spain. On return to the UK, Sue accepted a post at the University of Durham as a Lecturer in Hydrology and Hydraulics and after 4 years, in 2002, she moved on to Cranfield University. In 2005 she gained professorial status in recognition of her contribution to forwarding our understanding of integrated catchment management and its fundamental importance in securing ecosystem-related resources. Shortly afterwards, she became Associate Dean of the Faculty of Environment, Science and Manufacturing and Head of the Integrated Environmental Systems Institute at Cranfield.

Throughout her career Sue worked with a range of organisations across the world whilst remaining passionate about making a contribution to human welfare in Africa. As such she became the lead hydrologist on the ‘Valuing the Arc’ project where she worked with other internationally acclaimed scientists with the aim of better understanding how the fragile ecosystem in Tanzania could be managed for the benefit of the ecology and the local communities.

In 2009, Sue was awarded a distinguished Fulbright Scholarship to Stanford and Texas A&M Universities where she was able to immerse herself in investigating approaches to valuing water. Sue resolutely supported and inspired her students encouraging them to embrace their research topics, resulting in many of them continuing their careers within the environmental sector and making significant contributions themselves. She was patient and coached each individual as needed. She organised activities for students to understand and put in practice theoretical concepts they had learnt during the lectures. She liaised with key organisations she had collaborated with to ensure students saw the practicalities of implementing integrated catchment management. Sue will be remembered for her devotion to teaching.

Hydrological Achievements

Sue was a Fellow of the Chartered Institution of Water & Environmental Management (CIWEM) and a Member of the British Hydrological Society for 30 years (including serving as a committee member 2002-2005).


Reference Material

Selected Publications

1. Li M, Whelan MJ, Wang GQ, White SM (2013) Phosphorus sorption and buffering mechanisms in suspended sediments from the Yangtze Estuary and Hangzhou Bay, China. Biogeosciences, 10 (5): 3341-3348 DOI:10.5194/bg-10-3341-2013 https://www.biogeosciences.net/10/3341/2013/bg-10-3341-2013.pdf

2. Li M, Zhang J, Wang G, Yang H, Whelan MJ, White SM (2013) Organic phosphorus fractionation in wetland soil profiles by chemical extraction and phosphorus-31 nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy. Applied Geochemistry 33: 213-221 DOI:10.1016/j.apgeochem.2013.02.014 https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0883292713000474

3. Glavan M, White SM, Holman IP (2012) Water quality targets and maintenance of valued landscape character - experience in the Axe catchment, UK. Journal of Environmental Management, 103: 142-153. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301479712001284?via%3Dihub

4. Glavan M, White S, Holman IP (2011) Evaluation of river water quality simulations at a daily time step-experience with SWAT in the Axe catchment, UK, CLEAN. Soil, Air, Water, 39 (1): 43-54. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/clen.200900298

5. Fisher B, Bradbury RB, Andrews JE, Ausden M, Bentham-Green S, White SM, Gill JA (2011) Impacts of species-led conservation on ecosystem services of wetlands: understanding co-benefits and trade-offs. Biodiversity and Conversations 20 (11): 2461–2481 https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10531-011-9998-y

6. Fisher B, Turner RK, Burgess ND, Swetnam RD, Green J, Green RE, Kajembe G, Kulindwa K, Lewis SL, Marchant R, Marshall AR, Madoffe S, Munishi PKT, Morse-Jones S, Mwakalila S, Paavola J, Naidoo R, Ricketts T, Rouget M, Willcock S, White S, Balmford A (2011) Measuring, modeling and mapping ecosystem services in the Eastern Arc Mountains of Tanzania. Progress in Physical Geography, 35 (5): 595-611. DOI:10.1177/0309133311422968 https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/6699/28758a3724fb2cc27ec6ee6b1d18033af9ee.pdf

7. Granger SJ, Bol R, Hawkins JMB, White SM, Naden PS, Old GH, Marsh JK, Bilotta GS, Brazier RE, Macleod CJA, Haygarth PM (2011) Using artificial fluorescent particles as tracers of livestock wastes within an agricultural catchment. Science of the Total Environment, 409: 1095-1103. DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2010.12.005 https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0048969710013082?via%3Dihub

8. Whelan MJ, White S, Howden N (2010) River Catchment Contributions to the Coastal Zone. In: Green DR (Eds.) Coastal Zone Management ISBN10: 0727735160 ISBN13: 9780727735164 https://www.amazon.com/Coastal-Zone-Management-David-Green/dp/0727735160

9. Lopez Moreno JIL, Hess TM, White SM (2009) Estimation of reference evapotranspiration in a mountainous Mediterranean site using the Penman-Monteith equation with limited meteorological data. Pirineos, 164: 7-31. https://doaj.org/article/7244570dd340483d8229342f5c619b5b

10. Granger SJ, Bol R, Dixon L, Naden PS, Old GH, Marsh JK, Bilotta G, Brazier R, White SM, Haygarth PM (2010) Assessing multiple novel tracers to improve the understanding of the contribution of agricultural farm waste to diffuse water pollution. Journal of Environmental Monitoring, 12: 1159 -1169. DOI:10.1039/B915929K https://pubs.rsc.org/en/content/articlepdf/2010/em/b915929k

11. Granger SJ, Bol R, Meier-Augenstein W, Leng MJ, Kemp HF, Heaton TH, White SM (2010) The hydrological response of heavy clay grassland soils to rainfall in south-west England using delta2H. Rapid Communications in Mass Spectrometry, 24(5): 475-482. DOI: 10.1002/rcm.4281 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20127906

12. Granger SJ, Bol R, Anthony S, Owens PN, White SM, Haygarth PM, (2010) Chapter 3 - Towards a Holistic Classification of Diffuse Agricultural Water Pollution from Intensively Managed Grasslands on Heavy Soils. Advances in Agronomy, Academic Press 105: 83-115, ISBN 9780123810236, DOI:10.1016/S0065-2113(10)05003-0.

13. Granger SJ, Hawkins JMB, Bol R, White SM, Naden P, Old G, Bilotta GS, Brazier RE, Macleod CJA, Haygarth PM (2010) High temporal resolution monitoring of multiple pollutant responses in drainage from an intensively managed grassland catchment caused by a summer storm. Water, Air, & Soil Pollution 205 (1-4): 377-393 https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs11270-009-0083-z

14. White S (2008). Sediment dynamics and their Influence on the design of monitoring programmes. In: Quevauviller P, Borchers U, Thompson C, Simonart T (Eds) The Water Framework Directive. DOI:10.1002/9780470716090.ch15 https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/pdf/10.1002/9780470716090.ch15

15. White SM, Apitz SE (2008) Conceptual and strategic frameworks for sediment management at the river basin scale. In: Owens PN (Eds) Sustainable Management of Sediment Resources, Elsevier, Volume 4: 31-53, ISBN 9780444519610, DOI:10.1016/S1872-1990(08)80004-9. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1872199008800049

16. Kannan N, White SM, Worrall F, Whelan MJ (2007) Hydrological modelling of a small catchment using SWAT-2000 - Ensuring correct flow partitioning for contaminant modelling. Journal of Hydrology 334 (1-2): 64-72 DOI:10.1016/j.jhydrol.2006.09.030

17. Kannan N, White SM, Whelan MJ (2007) Predicting diffuse-source transfers of surfactants to surface waters using SWAT. Chemosphere 66 (7):1336-1345 DOI:10.1016/j.chemosphere.2006.07.005

18. Apitz S, Carlon , Oen A, White S (2007) Strategic Framework for Managing Sediment Risk at the Basin and Site-Specific Scale. In: Heise S (Eds) Sustainable Management of Sediment Resources, Elsevier, Volume 3: 77-106, ISBN 9780444519658, DOI:10.1016/S1872-1990(07)80064-X http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S187219900780064X

19. Babut M, Oen A, Hollert H, Apitz SE, Heise S, White S (2007) Prioritisation at River Basin Scale, Risk Assessment at Site-Specific Scale: Suggested Approaches. Heise S (Eds) Sustainable Management of Sediment Resources, Elsevier, Volume 3: 107-151, ISBN 9780444519658 https://doi.org/10.1016/S1872-1990(07)80065-1 http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1872199007800651

20. Hollert H, Ahlf W, Heise S, Manz W, Scrimshaw M, White S (2007) Controversies and Solutions in Environmental Sciences. Journal of Soils and Sediments 7(6): 360. DOI:10.1065/jss2007.11.266 https://link.springer.com/article/10.1065/jss2007.11.266#citeas

21. Heise S, Apitz S, Babut M, Bergmann H, den Besten P, Jan Ellen G, Gerrits L, Joziasse J, Maaß V, Oen A, Slob A, White S (2007) The Way Forward for Sediment Risk Management and Communication — A Summary. Heise S (Eds) Sustainable Management of Sediment Resources, Elsevier, Volume 3: 249-267, ISBN 9780444519658 DOI:10.1016/S1872-1990(07)80069-9 http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1872199007800699

22. Apitz S, Oen A, White SM (2007). Managing Sediment Risk at the Basin Scale: European Frameworks in Support of Complex Decisions. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/229057792_Managing_Sediment_Risk_at_the_Basin_Scale_European_Frameworks_in_Support_of_Complex_Decisions

23. Kannan N, White SM, Worrall F, Whelan MJ (2007) Sensitivity analysis and identification of the best evapotranspiration and runoff options for hydrological modelling in SWAT-2000. Journal of Hydrology 332 (3-4): 456-466. DOI: 10.1016/j.jhydrol.2006.08.001 https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S002216940600401X?via%3Dihub

24. Scrimshaw M, White S, Manz W, Hollert H, Ahlf W, Heise S (2006) Sediment-related discussions at the 16th SETAC Europe annual meeting Journal of Soils and Sediments 6 (2): 116-117. DOI: 10.1065/jss2006.05.155 https://link.springer.com/article/10.1065/jss2006.05.155

25. Casado MR, White S, Bellamy P, Dunbar M, Booker D, Maddock I. (2006) Analysing the sensitivity of two variogram models for the characterisation of the spatial pattern of depth in rivers. Proceedings of ACCURACY 2006 - 7th International Symposium on Spatial Accuracy Assessment in Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences 847-850. http://www.spatial-accuracy.org/CasadoWhite2006accuracy

26. Kannan N, White SM, Worrall F, Whelan MJ (2006) Pesticide modelling for a small catchment using SWAT-2000. Journal of Environmental Science and Health - Part B Pesticides, Food Contaminants, and Agricultural Wastes 41 (7): 1049-1070 DOI:10.1080/03601230600850804

27. White SM (2005) Sediment yield prediction and modelling. Hydrological Processes 19:3053-3057 (Invited Commentary paper).

28. García-Ruiz JM, Arnáez J, Beguería S, Seeger M, Martí-Bono C, Regüés D, Lana-Renault N, White S (2005) Runoff generation in an intensively disturbed, abandoned farmland catchment, Central Spanish Pyrenees. Catena, 59 (1): 79-92. DOI:10.1016/j.catena.2004.05.006 https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0341816204000724

29. Heise S, Apitz SE, Babut M, Bergmann H, den Besten P, Ellen GJ, Joziasse J, Katsiri A, Maaß V, Oen A, Slob A, White S (2004) Synthesis of the SedNet work package 5 outcomes. Journal of Soils and Sediments 4 (4): 233-235. DOI: 10.1007/BF02991118 https://sednet.org/download/WP5_jss4-2004.pdf

30. Owens PN, Apitz S, Batalla R, Collins A, Eisma M, Glindemann H, Hoornstra S, Köthe H, Quinton J, Taylor K, Westrich B, White S, Wilkinson H (2004) Synthesis of the SedNet work package 2 outcomes. Journal of Soils and Sediments 4 (4): 219-222. DOI: 10.1007/BF02991115 https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2FBF02991115

31. Anderton SP, White SM, Alvera B (2004) Evaluation of spatial variability of snow water equivalent in a high mountain catchment. Hydrological Processes 18(3):435-453.

32. Apitz SE, White SM (2003) A conceptual framework for river-basin-scale sediment management. Journal of Soils and Sediments 3 (3):1-7.

33. Holliday V, Higgitt D, Warburton J, White S (2003) Reconstructing upland sediment budgets in ungauged catchments from reservoir sedimentation and rainfall records calibrated using short-term streamflow monitoring. IAHS-AISH Publication 279: 59-67. http://hydrologie.org/redbooks/a279/iahs_279_0059.pdf

34. Latron J, Anderton S, White S, LLorens P, Gallart F (2003) Seasonal characteristics of the hydrological response in a Mediterranean mountain research catchment (Vallcebre, Catalan Pyrenees): Field investigations and modelling. IAHS-AISH Publication 278: 106-110. http://hydrologie.org/redbooks/a278/iahs_278_106.pdf

35. Anderton SP, White SM, Alvera B (2002) Micro-scale spatial variability and the timing of snow melt runoff in a high mountain catchment. Journal of Hydrology 268 (1-4): 158-176. DOI: 10.1016/S0022-1694(02)00179-8 https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0022169402001798

36. Anderton SP, Latron J, White SM, Llorens P, Gallart F, Salvany C, O'Connell PE (2002) Internal evaluation of a physically-based distributed model using data from a Mediterranean mountain catchment. Hydrology and Earth System Sciences 6 (1): 67-83. https://www.hydrol-earth-syst-sci.net/6/67/2002/

37. Abrahart RJ, White SM (2001) Modelling sediment transfer in Malawi: comparing back-propagation neural network solutions against a multiple linear regression benchmark using small data sets. Physics and Chemistry of the Earth 26(1):19-24.

38. García-Ruiz JM, Arnaez J, White SM, Llorente A (2000) Uncertainty assessment in the prediction of extreme rainfall events: an example from the central Spanish Pyrenees. Hydrological Processes 14:887-898.

39. White SM García-Ruiz JM (1998) Extreme erosional events and their role in mountain areas of northern Spain. Ambio XXVII(4):300-305.

40. Serra-Cobo J, Lacroix G, White S (1998) Comparison between the ecology of the new European frog Rana Pyrenaica and that of four Pyrenean amphibians. Journal of Zoology 246:147-154.

41. White SM, García Ruiz JM, Martí C, Alvera B, Del Barrio G (1997) Sediment transport in a high mountain catchment, central Spanish Pyrenees. Physics and Chemistry of the Earth 22(3-4):377-180.

42. Garcia-Ruiz JM, White SM, Lasanta T, Marti C, Gonzalez C, Errea MP, Valero B, Ortigosa L (1997) Assessing the effects of land-use changes on sediment yield and channel dynamics in the central Spanish Pyrenees. IAHS-AISH Publication 245: 151-158. http://hydrologie.org/redbooks/a245/iahs_245_0151.pdf

43. González C, García-Ruiz JM, Martí C, White S, Errea MP, Arnáez J (1997) Sediment sources in a small, abandoned farmland catchment, central Spanish Pyrenees. Physics and Chemistry of the Earth 22 (3-4): 291-293. DOI:10.1016/S0079-1946(97)00146-8 https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0079194697001468

44. White S, García-Ruiz JM, Martí C, Valero B, Errea MP, Gómez-Villar A (1997) The 1996 Biescas campsite disaster in the central spanish Pyrenees, and its temporal and spatial context. Hydrological Processes, 11 (14): 1797-1812. DOI:10.1002/(SICI)1099-1085(199711)11:14<1797::AID-HYP605>3.0.CO;2-7 https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1002/%28SICI%291099-1085%28199711%2911%3A14%3C1797%3A%3AAID-HYP605%3E3.0.CO%3B2-7

45. García Ruiz JM, Martí C, White S, González C, Arnaez J (1997) Sediment sources in a small, abandoned farmland catchment, central Spanish Pyrenees. Physics and Chemistry of the Earth 22(3-4):291-293.

46. García Ruiz JM, Lasanta T, González C, Martí C, White S, Ortigosa L (1997) Sediment sources during the traditional land use system in the Spanish Pyrenees. Physics and Chemistry of the Earth 22(3-4):351-354.

47. White SM, García Ruiz JM, Martí C, Valero B, Errea MP, Gómez Villar A (1997) The Biescas campsite disaster and its spatial context. Hydrological Processes 11(14):1797-1812.

48. García-Ruiz JM, Lasanta T, Ruiz-Flaño P, Ortigosa L, White S, González C, Martí C (1996) Land-use changes and sustainable development in mountain areas: A case study in the Spanish Pyrenees. Landscape Ecology 11 (5):267-277. 49. White S (1996) Erosion, sediment delivery and sediment yield patterns in the Philippines. IAHS-AISH Publication 236: 233-240. http://hydrologie.org/redbooks/a236/iahs_236_0233.pdf

50. Garcia Ruiz JM, Lasanta T, Gonzalez C, Marti C, White S, Errea MP, Maestro M (1996) Marginal agriculture as the source of sediment in the central Pyrenees [La agricultura marginal como fuente de sedimentos en el Pirineo Central] Cadernos Laboratorio Xeoloxico de Laxe, 21:123-132.

51. García-Ruiz JosM, Llamas R, White SM, Bromley J (1995) Preface. Physics and Chemistry of the Earth, 20 (3-4), p. 9. DOI: 10.1016/0079-1946(95)90001-2

52. García-Ruiz JM, Lasanta T, Martí C, Gonzáles C, White S, Ortigosa L, Ruiz Flaño P (1995) Changes in runoff and erosion as a consequence of land-use changes in the Central Spanish Pyrenees. Physics and Chemistry of the Earth 20 (3-4): 301-307. DOI: 10.1016/0079-1946(95)00041-0 https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/0079194695000410

53. White SM (1990) The influence of tropical cyclones as soil eroding and sediment transporting events. An example from the Philippines. Research needs and applications to reduce erosion and sedimentation in tropical steeplands. Procedures, symposium, Suva, 1990. 259-269. http://hydrologie.org/redbooks/a192/iahs_192_0259.pdf