Today, 3 July, Professor Eddy Moors started in his new role as Rector of IHE Delft Institute for Water Education. We asked him a few questions about what he would like to do in his first week at the Institute, and what his plans are for the near future.
What do you expect your first week to be like?
The first thing I will do is move into my new room and get settled in. On Thursday I will be formally introduced to the staff members of IHE Delft and I hope to meet as many colleagues as possible. Also, I expect to be busy with filling my diary for the coming months. I will start to plan meetings with people outside the Institute, but I will also continue meeting colleagues and talking to them.
What made you apply for this position?
Because IHE Delft brings together a few important things that interest me. One of them is the international atmosphere of the Institute combined with the topic of water, which has always attracted me. Also, I have been working in the Eastern part of the Netherlands for a long time. I’m looking forward now living in the West of the country. I would like to work with other institutions that are close by, such as TU Delft and a few international institutions located in the Hague area.
You have specialized in researching climate change. IHE has a substantial track record on climate change research, what kind of areas do you find important to work on in the coming years?
I think we can make a strong link with the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations. Goal 6 on Water is obviously important to IHE Delft, but water is linked to many other SDGs, such as Goal 13 on Climate Action. If you look at water, you also need to take into account the trends and validity of the climate. IHE Delft already does this, so that’s a good choice in my opinion. What I see happening is that there will be a growing interest in the world with regard to water scarcity. Traditionally, the Netherlands is very much focussed on fighting against a surplus of water. I therefore think that the groups within IHE Delft that focus on, among other things, re-use of water, have a great opportunity.
What are you going to be working on in the next couple of months?
I would like to talk to several different parties as soon as possible to discuss the opportunities for IHE Delft. In particular, I will have early meetings with our counterparts at the three Dutch Ministries: Foreign Affairs, Education, Culture and Science and Economic Affairs. I would also like to talk to other parties such as the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) about their science agenda, and how IHE Delft can contribute to that. In addition, I would like to talk to private organisations, such as Arcadis to discuss collaboration opportunities. In October, probably, representatives of UNESCO will visit the Institute. I would like to discuss with them what role IHE Delft can play in their science and activity programmes.
I am very much looking forward to experiencing the cultural diversity at the Institute. I am planning to have lunch in the restaurant on a regular basis, to talk informally to students and staff of the Institute.
About Eddy Moors
Professor Moors was head of the research team ‘Climate change and adaptive land & water management’ at Wageningen Environmental Research (Alterra). He is also Professor of Water and Climate at the VU University Amsterdam. He completed his PhD in 2012, focussing on the interaction between the atmosphere and the earth. Eddy Moors specialized in the research of climate change mitigation and adaptation.