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Dr Velis Research Team

Dr Velis’ research team within the School of Civil Engineering at the University of Leeds specialises in research on global solid waste management systems and the wider circular economy: research capabilities and projects include waste characterisation, material flow analysis, marine litter/ plastics pollution modelling, informal sector recycling (inclusive recycling), quantification and global benchmarking at city and country level, waste-related data analytics, and recovery of resources from waste, via mechanical processing and solid recovered fuel quality assurance.

The award-winning team has over 30 years’ experience in waste and resources management. This experience builds on a strong-track record of academic excellence, including research, publications/ reports, and global collaborations. With key scientific expertise in the development of plastic pollution methodologies to quantify sources, pathways, and fates of unmanaged plastic waste at various scales, our research team is able to provide solutions to help resolve this challenge. Benefited by our interdisciplinary approach and systems thinking perspective, we do not treat this issue in isolation, but instead consider the wider impacts of plastic pollution such as on the circular economy and informal recycling sector.

I strongly believe in concreted, genuinely collaborative, interdisciplinary and equitable research efforts - we can generate the necessary scientific evidence base, and act accordingly to rapidly inverse the global wave of mismanaged waste, stopping at large plastics pollution. No space for defeatism or despair - we can end plastic pollution within a generation's time.

WPE within School of Civil Engineering

The School of Civil Engineering in the University of Leeds, features with the top 50 worldwide (QS ranking 2020) has an excellent reputation for delivering high quality applied research, ranking 2nd in the UK for research power and having 85% of its research activity rated ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’. With over 40 academics and research staff, the School of Civil Engineering has particular strength in the area of public health and environmental engineering which works at the forefront of the disciplinary intersection between civil infrastructure, human health and the environment. Dr Velis' team works under the auspices of the WPE Group (Water, Public Health and Environmental Engineering), of which Dr Velis is Deputy Leader. Within this, the school has long-standing collaboration with university wide initiatives such as the Centre for Global Development ( and Water@leeds (; the latter being one of the biggest relevant knowledge hubs across the World.