The Centre for River Ecosystem Science (CRESS) is a research-led centre within the School of Biological and Environmental Sciences at the University of Stirling. We focus on high quality science applied to river ecosystems and provide independent scientific advice and services to both public and private sectors involved in a wide range of river-related activities.

CRESS, formerly known as the Centre for River Restoration Science (CRRESS), was set-up in March 2005 to develop an enhanced research capability centred on Scottish river ecosystems and meet a demand for scientifically informed river survey, monitoring and assessment to accommodate the requirements of the Water Framework Directive (2000/60/EC).

CRESS has expertise relating to various components of the ecosystem: channel, hyporheos, riparian and floodplain sub-systems. We are known internationally for our work in aquatic ecology, fluvial geomorphology and remote sensing of rivers.

The philosophy underpinning CRESS is that high quality environmental science is required to underpin modern day river management and that an ecosystem-based approach to river management, both in natural and engineered settings, is the key to successful and sustainable outcomes.


Our specific activities are focussed on:

(i) Improving and understanding of physical and ecological processes and their interactions in rivers.

(ii) Developing and testing river monitoring and assessment tools.

(iii) Environmental monitoring of the impacts of river management schemes and off-river activities.

(iv) Site appraisal and environmental impact assessment of river management schemes and off-river activites.

(v) Dissemination of knowledge via hosting or contributing to work shops, seminars, training sessions, conferences and producing publications as reports and peer reviewed articles.

(click here to see CRESS focus diagram)