Water conference sets sights on students

From January 27 to 30, TU Delft students are especially invited to participate in a first-time youth water conference in Zeeland.

A new flood management conference will take place this month from January 27 to 30 at the Watersnoodmuseumin Ouwekerk, Zeeland. It is especially aimed toward current students in the field of flood and water management. The conference, “Delta Cities Battling with Climate Change,” is the first youth conference of its kind in a new series called “Future Water Professionals @ Watersnoodmuseum.”

Registration for the conference ends on January 17. Prospective participants may sign up onlineor email the coordinator.

More than a dozen academic and professional leaders from the international community will present climate change topics at the conference. The list includes the CEO of Dutch Docklands, a company that develops water-borne buildings, a project manager from an urban development in Hamburg and a British journalist from Building Design Magazine.

Two speakers will come from TU Delft. Dr. Matthijs Kok, professor of flood risk, from the faculty of Civil Engineering and Geosciences, will discuss flood risk management. Dr. Chris Zevenbergen, a professor of water engineering at UNESCO-IHE and TU Delft, will also discuss modern flood resilience practices at Clean Tech Delta, a Rotterdam-based, green-technology solutions company. Zevenbergen also serves as Strategic Advisor at construction firm Dura Vermeerand board member at Clean Tech Delta.

Dr. Kok heads TU Delft’s Flood Risk Centre, which opened at the beginning of 2013 in conjunction with the civil engineering faculty. In keeping a broad worldview, the Flood Risk Centre studies flood risk and security of several delta regions around the world. Among the projects are flood modeling, hydraulic engineering, gaming simulations and disaster management.

The coordinator, Onne Kask, is an international bachelor’s student at the HZ University of Applied Sciences(Hogeschool Zeeland), in Vlissingen. Organizing the conference counts as her internship, which will count towards completing her graduation requirements in Delta Management. One of the highlights of her internship was preparing a lengthy proposal for secure conference funding from Rabobank.

The lengthy roster of speakers and workshop mentors is largely credited to Kask. “It has been amazing to invite all these well-known speakers to the conference. It has been an honor to get into contact with professionals from the field of water management,” Kask wrote in an email.

Kask hopes to stay in the water management industry after graduation and sees the conference as an opportunity for all students to network with leading global water industry professionals. 

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