Photo of Mrs Sarah Bunney

Mrs Sarah Bunney

Postgraduate Researcher


Sarah Bunney is a PhD researcher within the Centre for Water Systems research under the supervison of Professor David Butler and Dr Sarah Ward.  With a research focus on emergency management, Sarah is exploring the impact of system failure within the UK water sector to understand how improved resilience to extreme events can be achieved through effective emergency planning.

Sarah also worked for the Environment Agency in Flood Risk Management.  She specialised in the operational management of flooding incidents and providing expertise to Local Authorities in the development of major incident plans and multi-agency exercise scenarios.  Sarah has a bachelor's degree in Geology at the University of Manchester and a master's degree in Volcanology at the University of Bristol.  She is also a Fellow of the Geological Society.


Pervious Research

During her MSc, Sarah developed a series of elastic, visco-elastic and thermo-mechanical models using the structural mechanics and heat flow modules of COMSOL multi-physics to determine the causative mechanisms of unrest at Campi-Flegrei caldera, Italy. 


Thesis: The Effects of Structural Heterogeneities and In-Elastic Rheology on Ground Deformation at Campi-Flegrei Caldera, Italy


Research Interests

Sarah's prime research interest is exploring and understanding relationships within complex socio-technical systems to develop resilience based strategies for extreme events.  She is also interested in hazard and threat perception and how this influences the ability to achieve resilience within communities.



Bunney, S., Ward, S. & Butler, D. (2018)  Inter-organisational resilience for flood focussed emergency planning: examining multi-agency connectedness through Twitter.  Water Practice and Technology


Bunney, S, Ward, S. & Butler, D. (2016)  Can UK water service providers manage risk and resilience as part of a multi-agency approach? Conference Abstract: International Conference for Disaster Risk Reduction


Coco, A., Gottsmann, J., Whitaker, F., Rust A., Currenti, G., Jasim, A, and Bunney, S., (2016) Numerical models for ground deformation and gravity changes during volcanic unrest: simulating the hydrothermal system dynamics of a restless caldera. Solid Earth