Prof. Joby Boxall

Head of Department
Professor of Water Infrastructure EngineeringJoby Boxall
EPSRC Challenging Engineer

Department of Civil and Structural Engineering
Sir Frederick Mappin Building
Mappin Street, Sheffield, S1 3JD

Telephone: +44 (0) 114 222 5760
Fax: +44 (0) 114 222 5700
Room: D112


PhD, University of Sheffield; MEng(hons) University of Sheffield
CEng, CEnv, Member of the Chartered Institution of Water and Environmental Management


Joby Boxall joined the academic staff in 2002. Prof. Boxall´s research interests are concerned with understanding and modelling hydraulic, water quality and infrastructure performance throughout the natural and urban environment. His research interests are multi-disciplinary and have a number of cross cutting themes that include research in full-scale live systems, pilot and laboratory systems, with the application of theoretical, computational and analytical approaches, including software development. Specific themes include:

  • The monitoring, modelling, operation and management of potable water distribution systems for both quantity, with an emphasis on leakage, and quality encompassing physical, biological and chemical changes and interactions
  • The dynamics and impacts of pollutants in open channel systems
  • The hydraulic and pollution performance of urban drainage systems
  • Application of ICT for data collection from disparate urban water systems, together with computation (soft computing) techniques to turn data to information to knowledge
  • Asset management and whole life costs, including energy and carbon, associated with water distribution and sewer systems

Activities and Distinctions

  • Research manager leading the stimulation and development of a strategic programme of research for potable water distribution systems within the Pennine Water Group (EPSRC platform grant centre) and the Yorkshire Water Services strategic partnership.
  • Senate Award winner for development of Student Centred Hydraulics Laboratory Classes, to promote inquiry based learning at an early stage in undergraduate study.
  • Regular consultant to water industry for services in water distribution systems, particularly related to discoloured water.
  • Member of the College of the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC).
  • Director of SWIG (Sensors for Water Interest Group)
  • Water Industry Achievements Awards 2010, IWEX University Challenge Award Winner
  • Founder member of the Water Treatment and Supply network.

Current Grants

  • 2011-2016: "Peninne Water Group - Urban Water Systems for a Changing World. Platform Grant Renewal." funded by EPSRC. Investigators: Saul A. (PI) Biggs C., Boxall J. , Horoshenkov K., Sharp L., Tait S. Value: £1,4077,789.
  • 2011-2015: "Yorkshire Water Services Strategic Partnership, AMP 5." funded by Yorkshire Water Services Ltd. Investigators: Boxall J. (PI), Saul A., Lerner D., Beck S. Value: £529,129.
  • 2010-2013: "Real-time condition monitoring and early warning of failure of potable water using novel fluorescence spectroscopy instrumentation." Joint proposals in association with the University of Birmingham. Funded by EPSRC. Investigators: Boxall J. (PI Shef) and Bridgman J. (PI Bham). Value: £163,523 (and £221,273 Bham).
  • 2010-2012: "PODDS IV. Discolouration in trunk mains." Fieldwork based research to understand and predict long terms performance and best inform management options funded by Consortium of 5 UK water companies. Investigator: Boxall J. (PI). Value: £232,000.
  • 2009-2014: "Pipe Dreams." Visionary project under the EPSRC Challenging Engineering Scheme to establish a world leading interdisciplinary team for understanding and managing water quality transformations in potable water distribution systems and hence for making the best use of these infrastructure systems into the future. Funded by EPSRC Challenging Engineering. Investigator: Boxall J. Value: £1,058,000.
  • 2009-2012: "CASE Studentship" project to understanding the effects of dynamic shock loadings in causing leakage through field studies and data analysis. Funded by EPSRC/Yorkshire Water Services Ltd. Investigators: Boxall J. (PI) and Beck S. Value: £85,000.
  • 2009-2012: "Contaminant Ingress into Distribution systems (CID)". Development of and testing with a novel laboratory facility to demonstrate and quantify the phenomena and to develop associated modelling tools. Funded by EPSRC. Investigators: Boxall J. and Saul AJ. Value: £345,000.

Selected Publications

Journal articles