Resilience to Drought and Water Scarcity
As part of the overall Resilience@UT programme, the sub-programme on resilience to drought and water scarcity is carried out by an interfaculty working group from the five UT faculties. Its purpose is to mobilise, combine and strengthen the university’s excellence in research, education, capacity building and knowledge valorisation for strengthening resilience to drought and water scarcity in our region and beyond. The focus is on :
- reducing dependence on freshwater;
- improving drought monitoring, prediction and response;
- increasing the availability of water for ecosystems and human activities;
- adapting land use to water availability;
- treating increasingly polluted water sources; and
- enhancing governance
In the region of Twente, the UT has joined with regional stakeholders (Stichting Pioneering, Vechtstromen Water Board, Vitens drinking water company, the Muncipality of Enschede, Grolsch, Savion Univ. of Applied Sciences, and ENVAQUA association of water and environmental technology companies) to develop an agenda for improving drought resilience in the region.
The UT also supports drought resilience at the international level in collaboration with numerous partners around the world, particularly in the Global South, which is the focus of the geo-sciences faculty, ITC, through the Centre for Disaster Resilience.
Our inventory of expertise that supports drought resilience reflects the UT’s “high tech - human touch approach“
- “High tech” including the monitoring and modelling of key physical systems (water, water-soil, water-vegetation, water-atmosphere) and the technical solutions to improve the functioning of these systems to make them more drought resilient (high tech)
- “Human touch” including understanding the behaviour and interests of individual actors, multi-actor collaboration, and governance systems and promoting behavioural change, collaboration, governance instruments and business models to improve drought resilience.
The five UT faculties all contribute to addressing aspects of understanding and addressing aspects of resilience to drought and water scarcity:
CORE KNOWLEDGE DOMAINS AND EXPERTISE
Behavioural, Management and Social sciences (BMS)
Governance of drought, social justice, citizen science.
Engineering Technology (ET)
Water footprint, water saving irrigation technologies, saltwater intrusion, underground stability, hydrological modelling, integral river management, stakeholder involvement, field labs.
Electrical Engineering, Mathematics and Computer Science (EEMCS)
Sensors (monitoring of hydrological variables, underwater networks, plant sensing techniques) and optimization.
Geo-Information Science and Earth Observation (ITC)
Use of satellite observations and sensors to monitor soil moisture, temperature, crop productivity or vegetation greenness. Business models, decision support for farmers.
Science and Technology (TNW)
Membrane technology for water treatment.
expertise of the five faculties
The Drought Resilience Working Group is represented by members from all five faculties: