Personal profile

Research interests

Paul is a hydrologist by background, a Fellow of the Royal Society and of the American Geophysical Union, a Royal Society Wolfson Research Merit Award holder and in 2019 was awarded a CBE for services to flood risk management.  He is also Chairman of the flood risk analytics company Fathom (

He has widespread research interests in risk, resilience, uncertainty, governance and decision-making in relation to natural hazards and global water issues. He is a double recipient of the Lloyd's of London Science of Risk prize and in 2015 he was awarded a 50th Anivversary Prize for Economic Impact by the UK's Natural Environment Research Council.  He has published over 230 papers in international peer-reviewed journals, and these were cited over 2000 times in 2020 according to the ISI Web of Knowledge. He currently has an ISI H-index of 77 (or 97 on Google Scholar). For a full publication list see here.

Paul's main science contribution has been to improve the prediction of flood inundation through the development of new computer models, the use of data from new airborne, satellite and ground sensors and through the better characterization of risk and uncertainty.  For videos of Paul talking about his research see here and here.

He has held Visiting Scientist positions at Princeton University, Dept. of Civil Engineering, Laboratoire National d'Hydraulique, Paris, the EU Joint Research Centre, Ispra, Italy and NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

He also undertakes significant International collaboration, including work with the French National Space Agency (CNES), Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas da Amazônia in Brazil, as well as numerous universities in the US, Europe and Africa.

External positions

Chairman, Fathom

30 Nov 0001 → …

Structured keywords and research groupings

  • Cabot Institute Water Research
  • Cabot Institute Natural Hazards and Disasters Research
  • Cabot Institute Environmental Change Research


  • Floods
  • Flood risk
  • Uncerrtainty
  • Natural hazards


Dive into the research topics where Paul D Bates is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.
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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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