Dec 19, 2019

Bram Verkruysse: Water Management lecturer with passion for sustainability

"Sustainability is my mission, and I know that many young people feel the same way, that a more sustainable world is a better world."

Originally posted on January 19 2017 Mr Bram Verkruysse is a lecturer for a number of courses within the Delta Academy. He teaches portions of the Water track in the first year of Water Management, but you’ll also have classes from him in the 2nd and 4th year, regardless if you continue with Aquatic Eco Technology or Delta Management. As one of his students, I have always been amazed by his passion for sharing his knowledge about Geology and Geography. Here's your chance to learn more about him.

Good to be here, could you tell me a bit about your background? Education?

I graduated in 1991 from Wageningen University from what is nowadays called International Land and Water Management. Or you could also say I was an agricultural or irrigation engineer. At that time the programme was focused on international cooperation, projects, etc. Already then it was criticized that there were a lot of western ideas imposed on other society’s. That made it fascinating to study.

How did you become involved or interested in the field of Water management? Did your Dutch heritage effect your choice?

I was born here in Zeeland, but what started my interest was that in high school I had a friend who was from Suriname. They invited me to spend my holidays there. And so I went, I was 17. Afterwards I became interested in what you may call tropical agriculture because of that holiday. During my first year at an University of applied science, I got interested mainly in the field of Soil Sciences. Not the crop production, or the cattle production but mainly the land and water management. And then I changed my studies into land and water management. What I thought was important, had very much to do with geology and erosion control. That captured my attention.

I never went back to Suriname, but it was amazing.

preparing a camping meal.jpgPreparing a meal during a camping trip

What do you consider the main reason for students to pick HZ for their studies?

Well I think the top reason to me is related to our effective mix of natural sciences such as biology and geology.  Specifically the systems thinking in regards to ecology, which is a valuable skill. And then of course related to that is sustainability. Sustainability is my mission, and I know that many young people feel the same way, that a more sustainable world is a better world.

If you agree to choose based on values like that, idealism is also involved.

DSC_3700_1.jpgGuiding students in creating a vision for Zeeland

What are your expectations for the Dutch water sector in the next 50 years?

That I really don’t know.

If there is something that can be called a “Dutch approach”, which many people have asked me to describe, I think that would be something like involving all aspects, all stakes and stakeholders. An integrated approach. I don’t think those internationally prestigious dredging projects are so interesting for us. That is not the essence of integrated water management.

Like the palm islands projects in Dubai..

Yes, they are interesting for business I think, but it should be the right business. I don’t think that the Dutch approach refers to dredging.

As one of your students, I have experienced your passion for geography. What is your favourite landscape to visit during the summer vacation?

The mountains, the Himalayas for example. During my internship in Nepal, I loved walking in the Himalayan Mountain range.

Bram.jpgEnjoying his time off: singing, visiting his favorite city (Venice) and bird-watching

It's a pleasure to learn from a teacher who is as dedicated to his field as Mr Verkruysse. I truly enjoy his lecturers and ensure that you will as well! 

Curious about other Delta Academy lectures? Check out these interviews about Emma McAteer and Giuliana Scuderi

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