• Honorary Research Associate


Academic Profile

Dr Johanna Koehler is Research Associate and Water Programme Manager at the Smith School of Enterprise and the Environment, University of Oxford, and Research Fellow at Christ Church, Oxford. Her research examines the interplay of water risks and institutional change in terms of political and institutional transformations in the water sector as well as new professional rural water service delivery models emerging across sub-Saharan Africa. Specifically, she investigates how risks and responsibilities can be re-conceptualised and re-allocated in pluralist arrangements between the state, market, and communities.

Her work as part of the Smith School Water Programme has also contributed to developing a business model for maintaining drinking water infrastructure in marginalised areas of Kenya (FundiFix), which serves over 70,000 people with reliable water services. She holds a DPhil in Geography and the Environment from the University of Oxford (Clarendon Scholar), and previously worked at the United Nations Office in Geneva. In 2017, her research appeared in The Economist, and in 2018 she was joint winner as part of the Smart Water Systems group of the inaugural University of Oxford's Vice Chancellor's Innovation Award. In 2019 she was appointed water and sustainable development expert on the World Economic Forum Expert Network.

Key Research Projects


  • Co-Lead of the ‘Water Policy' module for the MSc in Water Science, Policy and Management, School of Geography and the Environment, University of Oxford
  • Lecturer on Water Governance in ‘Environmental Geography', BA in Geography, School of Geography and the Environment, University of Oxford
  • Selected tutorials in Geography at Christ Church, University of Oxford

Selected Publications

Journal Articles

Book Chapters