Delft, The Netherlands, 17 Feb 2014

Sebastiaan van Herk awarded with Doctoral degree

On 14 February 2014, Mr. Sebastiaan van Herk successfully presented and defended his PhD thesis and was awarded with a Doctoral degree by the TU Delft. Professor Chris Zevenbergen was his Promoter. The PhD research focused on ‘Delivering Integrated Flood Risk Management, Governance for collaboration, learning and adaptation

The frequency and consequences of extreme flood events have increased rapidly worldwide in recent decades and climate change and economic growth are likely to exacerbate this trend. Flood protection measures alone cannot accommodate the future frequencies and impacts of flooding. Integrated flood risk management (IFRM) considers a portfolio of measures to reduce flood risk that comprises flood protection, but also land use planning and emergency management.

The implementation of IFRM policies and projects is not straightforward and guidance is lacking. IFRM requires collaboration between multiple disciplines and by a group of stakeholders with various interests and means. The stakeholders have to combine objectives and funding from different policy domains and consider a range of possible options at all spatial scale levels and for various time horizons. Moreover the overarching societal system and its incumbent cultures, structures and practices are yet unfit for IFRM.

This dissertation provides guidance for IFRM: governance arrangements for planning processes; for stimulating learning and collaboration; for adaptation of the physical (natural and man-made) and societal systems. It presents 4 appealing case studies from the Netherlands. This work brings new insights to the scientific domains of inter alia: flood risk management; adaptive co-management; and transition management, particularly through their mutual enrichment.

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