In the wake of the floods of 1998 and 2000 the Government invited the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) to carry out a technical review of flood-risk management in England and Wales and to consider the most appropriate approaches to flood-risk management for the 21st century. The findings of this Commission are published in the ICE report Learning to live with rivers. Further information on the Commission and its work is available at www.icenet.org.uk/presidential.htm. This paper provides an introduction to the need for such a review and the scope of the Commission's work. A summary of the findings of the Commission are presented along with key recommendations for improved flood-risk management in the future.