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Teun Terpstra

Researcher/lecturer

The uncertainty about (extreme) sea level rise poses an enormous challenge for the current generation of students, our future water managers. I think it is a privilege to be able to train them for this. Through their studies they gain the knowledge needed to tackle this topic. They face enormous challenges, such as climate change and energy transition. So, it is about something that is very real.

"Water safety is all about protecting the country against flooding."

We conduct research into extreme sea level rise. How do we ensure safety, today but also in the next fifty or one hundred years? Water safety is more than just technology. There are many aspects to the protection of land against flooding. It is about designing new solutions that are spatially adaptable and provide value for people and nature. Communication and decision-making concerning this is primarily a social and administrative issue. In addition to the systematics and the legislation and regulations that a flood defence has to comply with, students also learn to consider the stakeholders that play a role in the delta and their specific interests. When involving residents, for example, we pay attention to risk awareness, the support for new water safety plans and how to deal with an imminent flood.

I graduated from the University of Twente in Civil Engineering and obtained my PhD in Psychology. I worked for ten years at a water safety consultancy. I have been a researcher and lecturer at HZ University of Applied Sciences for two years now.

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