Water, Geotechnical and Transport

Create solutions for society and the natural environment

a bridge

What is Water, Geotechnical and Transport Engineering?

Water Engineers work across all aspects of the water cycle in natural and engineered systems. This includes ensuring the availability, management of clean water, flood management and stormwater systems, and coastal engineering. Geotechnical Engineering covers the design of anything that sits on, interacts with or goes through the ground. Transport Engineers aim to make transportation systems efficient, reliable, affordable and sustainable. They do this through areas such as network planning and modelling, safety, public transport analysis and environmental modelling.

Why study Water, Geotechnical and Transport Engineering?

This area of engineering has a heavy bearing on society, the natural environment and daily life. You’ll work to ensure reliable, safe and effective resources for humans whilst protecting the planet. Learn from our broad range of leading engineers and scientists solving problems and providing societal guidance in the areas of: hydrology and the impacts of climate change; water supply options; wastewater and coastal management; geotechnical design; landslide and earthquake resilience; and network behaviour and optimisation.

Why choose UNSW?

Water Engineering is an area of expertise at UNSW, we’re ranked 8th in the World in Water Resources Engineering by the Shanghai rankings. We're ranked 1st in Australia for Civil and Structural Engineering, and 17th in the world for Civil and Structural Engineering according to the QS World University Rankings by Subject, 2024. We have our own Water Research Laboratory at our Manly campus and we conduct extensive research in the area especially around climate issues like erosion and flooding. Our school is first in Australia for Civil and Structural Engineering, and 16th in the world for Civil Engineering.

Our academics are world-leading experts in the areas of earthquake design, dam engineering, geothermal energy, rock mechanics, mine design and petroleum engineering to name a few. In this study area, you’ll learn across a variety of areas including human factors in design, the impact of electric and autonomous vehicles, housing markets, environmental modelling and even epidemiology.

What about careers?

Take your civil engineering career to the next level and make a difference to your community or other communities in need with a specialist role in water, geotechnical or transport engineering. Grow your skillset and gain the required knowledge to work in one of these areas, combining this skillset with your foundational knowledge in Civil Engineering will equip you for a rewarding role as a specialist engineer in the area of water, geotech or transport. Specialist Civil Engineers have a strong projected growth with a variety of career options on offer. 

Career options include:

  • Coastal Engineer
  • Geotechnical Engineer
  • Hydraulic Engineer
  • Hydrologist
  • Hydropower and Reservoir Management
  • Port Engineer
  • Transport Network Engineer
  • Water Engineer

What are my study options?

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