People

IHE Delft's staff members are committed to bring water education, research and capacity development to a higher level. Together with its motivated PhD fellows, Alumni, Students and Partners, IHE Delft forms a strong knowledge network of water sector experts.

Staff in focus

Gaetano Casale

Manager Liaison Office

Gaetano joined IHE Delft in May 2007, and before that he had graduated from IHE Delft with an MSc in Water Services Management. He explains how, as an MSc participant and as a staff member, IHE Delft has been the place that opened the door to many different cultures and also provided him with extensive knowledge about the water sector on a global scale. After realising where his real interests lay, Gaetano made a change from electrical engineering to development cooperation and, in particular, in support of the water sector in developing countries. He then started working at IHE Delft as Project Officer, later taking on the role of Manager of the Project Office which developed into today’s Liaison Office. The focus of that office is on project acquisition and international relations. He adds “In a world that is changing at the speed of light, and where more organizations are providing education and capacity building in the field of water and the environment, I hope that in five years, water professionals still consider IHE Delft as the best option to get the knowledge needed to make an impact in the water sector, thus contributing to the achievement of SDG 6.”

Gaetano Casale

Susanne Schmeier

Senior Lecturer in Water Law and Diplomacy

Susanne joined IHE Delft in July 2018 as a Senior Lecturer in Water Law and Diplomacy. Previously, she worked for many years on the policy side: among others with the German Gesellschaft für internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), with the Mekong River Commission (MRC) and with the World Bank, focusing on shared water resources and the challenges and opportunities related to them. She considers the recent launch of the Water, Peace and Security (WPS) partnership as a highlight of her work at IHE, especially of the great team work among all partners, led by IHE Delft. WPS developed a set of tools that allows users to identify potential hotspots of future water-related risks and conflicts and to understand such potential conflicts in greater detail. This aims at ultimately supporting actors engaged in preventing or mitigating such conflict risks to take effective and timely action. Another highlight of her work has been teaching and working with the students, especially those of the Joint MSc Programme in Water Cooperation and Diplomacy. At IHE Delft, she highly appreciates the interdisciplinary nature of the Institute and its work. She explains “I see IHE Delft continuing to be the world’s leading institution for water research, education and capacity development, searching for responses for global water challenges.”

Susanne Schmeier

Staff

PhD Fellows in focus

Miguel Angel Laverde Barajas

PhD fellow

Miguel comes from Colombia. His research aims to investigate and gain a better understanding of dynamic error in satellite-derived rainfall data, during extreme hydrological conditions. His approach uses a spatiotemporal pattern recognition technology to analyse and correct multiple sources of systematic error in rainfall satellites. During his PhD, Miguel has had the opportunity to work on the SERVIR-Mekong program, a partnership between USAID and NASA, which is implemented by the Asian Disaster Preparedness Centre (ADPC) in Bangkok, Thailand. Part of his work with SERVIR-Mekong has included participating in the implementation of new bias correction methods for precipitation data. Additionally, Miguel has had the chance to develop components for Water Accounting with IHE Delft. One of his most valuable experiences at IHE Delft Institute was being able to discuss water-related challenges with researchers and stakeholders in a multicultural environment. In the future, Miguel would like to ensure that advanced remote sensing technology is available and accessible to developing countries, to connect “space to village” (link villages to space).

Miguel Angel Laverde Barajas

Natalia Reyes Tejada

PhD fellow

Natalia comes from Bolivia and has a background in Political Science and Rural Development. Before joining IHE Delft, she worked in various development projects targeting water governance from a technical approach. These being in peri-urban irrigation systems in South America, and in integrating a gender approach to the governance of water in various GIZ projects. But also at a policy level for example in her work with UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Hydrological Programme team in Montevideo. Her PhD in the water governance department explores a very concrete case of urban irrigated farming in Maputo. What she appreciates the most about IHE Delft is the opportunity to do her research in two very different and challenging contexts: Delft and Maputo. She explains, “Once I finish my PhD, I wish to go back to work in development projects in Africa or Latin America and to be able to bring a scientific and nuanced perspective to challenge the current state of affairs in international development and water management”.

Natalia Reyes Tejada

PHD Fellows

Alumni

IHE Delft has provided post-graduate education to more than 23,000 water professionals from over 190 countries. They form the Institute’s alumni community, the largest global network of water professionals in the world. They are acquiring key positions, supporting the implementation of the global water agenda and improving the quality of life of their communities every day.

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Students

Our students do not only study and share water-related knowledge, but also get to broaden their perspective on the wonders of each others' cultures, religions and beliefs.

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