The inverse problems exist widely in the field of the environmental hydraulics. The flow and pollutants transportation, coupled with flow, can be identified and controlled by the study of the environmental hydraulics, which benefits the continual utilization of water resources. Based on the idea of the inverse problem, the connotation of the inverse problems of the environmental hydraulics is expounded. The inverse problems of the environmental hydraulics are sorted according to the various points of view. And its importance in research is emphasized. In this paper, the present study methods and results are analyzed from the aspects of the inverse problems on the parameter, source, boundary condition, initial condition and shape in the environmental hydraulics. Some unresolved issues and future research perspectives are also addressed.