Data and evidence

Data and evidence are a critical part of integrated catchment management, helping partners to engage a wide audience, agree on the priority issues and solutions and monitor outcomes. 

River Ecosystem Services has a wealth of experience in the effective visualisation of data through maps, infographics and other media. Our approach is to deliver outputs which the client owns and can develop in the future, either with or without, our help. The aim is to build capacity in the catchment management community to use data and evidence as part of an adaptive management approach.


Collaboration through evidence sharing:

The growing availability of Open Data, combined with advances in mobile and online mapping software and wider access to fast broadband, have enabled rivers trusts to make better use of data and evidence to work more effectively in collaboration.  ‘Story Map’ templates, developed by The Rivers Trust and shared with local trusts, have enabled better data sharing between organisations and local communities by visualising complex information in a way everyone can understand.

River Ecosystem Services (RES) can use the expertise it has gained over a wide range of projects to help clients develop their own evidence sharing platforms, including story maps. A key aim, in addition to delivering what the client wants, is to pass on the skills required so that the client can refine and re-purpose these platforms in the future if they would like to. This means that the evidence sharing platforms we develop will have a longer lifespan and can be adapted to the changing needs of the client.


Mapping portal:

This online resource is a collection of data, maps and apps, and GIS training resources, to help rivers trusts and catchment partnerships use data and evidence in their local catchments.

There is an online data package, which contains a range of key layers to support catchment planning and has been developed by The Rivers Trust team.  Rivers trusts and catchment partnerships can use these layers in their own GIS systems, filtering the data to their catchment.  There are also links to training resources, including an online training portal which rivers trusts and catchment partnerships can use to train staff in key GIS and spatial analysis skills. RES can help clients make the best use of these resources for their own work to minimise the resource required.


Environmental modelling and analysis:

Environmental modelling provides a key component of the evidence base required to support catchment management. The Rivers Trust have built up considerable expertise in the use of modelling to deliver catchment projects and evaluate their success.

The RES team can work with clients to identify and deliver the most appropriate modelling approach either on our own or in partnership with other expert modellers. Wherever possible we will pass on the skills required to refine and re-purpose the modelling work in the future, should this be required. This ensures that the maximum value is obtained from our modelling work.


The team:

The Rivers Trust is a national organisation with a membership drawn from across the UK and Ireland. River Ecosystem Services can draw on over 200 technical staff from across the Rivers Trust movement to ensure that clients have access to all the skills required to deliver a successful project. The Data & Evidence team is lead by Michelle Walker and David Johnson who between them have over 40 years’ experience in the water and environmental industry.