Dr Charles is an environmental engineer who focuses on improving access to safe drinking water and sanitation. Throughout her career she has worked on issues related to water and sanitation that include: public health, environmental fate and transport of pathogens, impacts of climate change on access, and barriers to adequate sanitation in informal settlements. Her work has been funded by the World Health Organization, DFID, UK Research Councils (NERC/ESRC), and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and includes work in Kenya, Rwanda, and Uganda. Dr Charles undertook her PhD on a risk-based approach to management of decentralised wastewater treatment systems in Sydney's drinking water catchments in Australia. She joined the University of Oxford in 2013 having previously been a lecturer at the University of Surrey.
Senior Research Fellow
- Member of the Transformations: Economy, Society and Place research cluster
- Tel: +44 (0)1865 285184
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Dr Charles' research encompasses a range of cross-disciplinary approaches to understanding and improving water security for the poor. She is active in research in Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa. Dr Charles is the co-director of the REACH: Improving water security for the poor programme, which addresses water security challenges in Kenya, Ethiopia and Bangladesh. Her work addresses the role of human behaviour in achieving water security; management of water-related health risks; and the impact of climate variability and climate change on water security.
Selected Research Projects
- REACH: Improving water security for the poor. Funded by DFID; 2015-2022.
- Gro for GooD: Groundwater Risk Management for Growth and Development. Funded by DFID/ESRC/NERC; 2015-2019.
- 3ksan: Catalysing self-sustaining sanitation chains in informal settlements, working in Kisumu (Kenya), Kigali (Rwanda) and Kampala (Uganda). Funded by the SPLASH Sanitation Programme; 2010-2014.
- Vision 2030: The resilience of water supply and sanitation in the face of climate change technology projection study. Funded by WHO and DFID; 2008-2009.
- Migration of enteric viruses in deep aquifers: intergranular transport processes, sorption and survival. Funded by NERC; 2005-2007.
Dr Charles was previously the course director of the MSc in Water Science, Policy and Management. She coordinates and teaches modules on Water Policy, Politics and Law, Water and Health, Water Management, and Research Design and Skills. She leads electives on Cities without Slums: policies and the urban poor, and on Water Security and Poverty. She also teaches water security for the Masters of Public Policy programme at the Blavatnik School of Government.
Current Graduate Research Students
Achieving water security in a developing-country delta city: Challenges from a waterfront development project in Jakarta Bay
Recent Graduate Research Students (since 2006)
Completed DPhil in 2017
The Anti-Dam Protest Cycle: Evidence from Asia
Recent Graduate Research Students
Completed DPhil in 2015
|Demand-driven sustainable sanitation improvements in low-income informal settlements: a collective approach for East African cities (University of Surrey)|
- Kirchherr, J., Charles, K. and Walton, M. (2017) The interplay of activists and dam developers: the case of Myanmar’s mega-dams. International Journal of Water Resources Development, 33(1): 111-131. [Download Pre-Print Manuscript].
- Kirchherr, J., Matthews, N., Charles, K.J. and Walton, M.J. (2017) “Learning it the Hard Way”: Social safeguards norms in Chinese-led dam projects in Myanmar, Laos and Cambodia. Energy Policy, 102: 529-539. [Download Pre-Print Manuscript].
- Kirchherr, J. and Charles, K. (2016) The Social Impacts of Dams: A New Framework for Scholarly Analysis. Environmental Impact Assessment Review, 60: 99-114. [Download Pre-Print Manuscript].
- Kirchherr, J., Charles, K.J. and Walton, M.J. (2016) Multi-causal pathways of public opposition to dam projects in Asia: A fuzzy set qualitative comparative analysis (fsQCA). Global Environmental Change, 41: 33-45. [Download Pre-Print Manuscript].
- Kirchherr, J., Disselhoff, T. and Charles, K. (2016) Safeguards, financing and employment in Chinese infrastructure projects in Africa: the case of Ghana’s Bui Dam. Waterlines, 35(1): 37-58. [Download Pre-Print Manuscript].
- Kirchherr, J., Pohlner, H. and Charles, K.J. (2016) Cleaning up the big muddy: A meta-synthesis of the research on the social impact of dams. Environmental Impact Assessment Review, 60: 115-125. [Download Pre-Print Manuscript].
- Okurut, K., Kulabako, R.N., Abbott, P., Adogo, J.M., Chenoweth, J., Pedley, S., Tsinda, A. and Charles, K. (2015) Access to improved sanitation facilities in low-income informal settlements of East African cities. Journal of Water, Sanitation and Hygiene for Development, 5(1): 89-99.
- Okurut, K., Kulabako, R.N., Chenoweth, J. and Charles, K. (2015) Assessing demand for improved sustainable sanitation in low-income informal settlements of urban areas: a critical review. International Journal of Environmental Health Research, 25(1): 81-95.
- Okurut, K. and Charles, K.J. (2014) Household demand for sanitation improvements in low-income informal settlements: A case of East African cities. Habitat International, 44: 332-338.
- Ahmed, A.E.S.I., Cavalli, G., Bushell, M.E., Wardell, J.N., Pedley, S., Charles, K. and Hay, J.N. (2013) Straw N-halamines: evaluation in single and multistage filtration systems. Carbohydrate Polymers, 92(2): 1934-1941.
- Tsinda, A., Abbott, P., Pedley, S., Charles, K., Adogo, J., Okurut, K. and Chenoweth, J. (2013) Challenges to achieving sustainable sanitation in informal settlements of Kigali, Rwanda. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 10(12): 6939-6954.
- Bartram, J., Charles, K., Evans, B., O'Hanlon, L. and Pedley, S. (2012) Commentary on community-led total sanitation and human rights: should the right to community-wide health be won at the cost of individual rights? Journal of Water and Health, 10(4): 499-503.
- Ahmed, A., Cavalli, G., Bushell, M., Wardell, J., Pedley, S., Charles, K. and Hay, J. (2011) New approach to produce water free of bacteria, viruses and halogen in a recyclable system. Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 77(3): 847-853.
- Howard, G., Charles, K., Pond, K., Brookshaw, A., Hossain, R. and Bartram, J. (2010) Securing 2020 vision for 2030: climate change and ensuring resilience in water and sanitation services. Journal of Water and Climate Change, 1(1): 2-16.
- Charles, K.J., Shore, J., Sellwood, J., Laverick, M., Hart, A. and Pedley, S. (2009) Assessment of the stability of human viruses and coliphage in groundwater by PCR and infectivity methods. Journal of Applied Microbiology, 106(6): 1827-1837.
- Ferguson, C., Charles, K. and Deere, D. (2009) Quantification of microbial sources in drinking-water catchments. Critical Reviews in Environmental Science and Technology, 39(1): 1-40.
- Charles, K.J., Souter, F.C., Baker, D.L., Davies, C.M., Schijven, J.F., Roser, D.J., Deere, D.A., Priscott, P.K. and Ashbolt, N.J. (2008) Fate and transport of viruses during sewage treatment in a mound system. Water Research, 42(12): 3047-3056.
- Charles, K. (2015) Climate Change. Chap. 35 in, Bartram, J. (ed.) Routledge Handbook of Water and Health. Routledge. pp. 367-375. ISBN: 9781138910072.
- Charles, K. (2015) Water Safety Plans. Chap. 23 in, Bartram, J. (ed.) Routledge Handbook of Water and Health. Routledge. pp. 245-252. ISBN: 9781138910072.
- Charles, K. and Pond, K. (2015) Drinking Water Quality Regulations. Chap. 44 in, Bartram, J. (ed.) Routledge Handbook of Water and Health. Routledge. pp. 447-454. ISBN: 9781138910072.
- Charles, K.J., Pond, K. and Pedley, S. (2009) Vision 2030. The resilience of water supply and sanitation in the face of climate change: Technology fact sheets. World Health Organization, Geneva.
- Charles, K.J., Pond, K., Pedley, S., Hossain, R. and Jacot-Guillarmod, F. (2009) Vision 2030. The resilience of water supply and sanitation in the face of climate change: Technology projection study. World Health Organization, Geneva.