Dutch professionals visited PWRI

On November 15, 2023, a group of about 40 young professionals from the Netherlands visited the Public Works Research Institute (PWRI) and discussed views and ideas on various issues with their Japanese counterparts. They are currently working at five government organizations: the Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management, the Department of Waterways and Public Works, the PBL Netherland Environmental Assessment Agency, the Human Environment and Transport Inspectorate, and the Authority for Nuclear Safety and Radiation Protection.

The meeting with ICHARM, taking place at its auditorium and moderated by Chief Researcher KURIBAYASHI Daisuke, began with Mr. Jeroen Deurloo, the leader of the Dutch delegation, introducing the visiting group to ICHARM researchers. Deputy Director MORI Noriyuki followed, outlining the organization and activities of ICHARM. After that, four ICHARM researchers took turns presenting their research: Senior Researcher Mohamed Rasmy Abdul Wahid on the long-term runoff analysis system; Research Specialist Shrestha Badri Bhakta on agricultural risk assessment under climate change in Indonesia; Researcher KAKINUMA Daiki on flood forecasting for Japan’s small- and medium-sized rivers; Senior Researcher MIYAMOTO Mamoru on the Online Synthesis System for Sustainability and Resilience implemented in the Philippines.

Representing the Dutch delegation, Ms. Louise-Ann Zaat of the Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management spoke about water management in Dutch rivers and future challenges. Taking the Meuse River, for which she is in charge, as an example, she explained that a further increase in river flow is predicted due to climate change during the winter when the flow is usually high, while a further decrease is projected during the summer when it is usually low. To reduce such impacts, they plan to expand the cross-sectional area of flow by river excavation and heighten the levees to increase the river’s flow volume for the dry season.

The participants on both sides asked each speaker many questions, and the meeting lasted far longer than scheduled. Director for Special Research MITSUHASHI Hisashi ended the event by thanking them for their active participation.

The Dutch visitors also spent the afternoon having meetings with the researchers of two other research centers of PWRI: the Center for Advanced Engineering Structural Assessment and Research (CAESAR) and the Innovative Materials and Resources Research Center (iMaRRC). It was the first time in a long time that PWRI had received such a large group of Dutch professionals. The exchange of views and ideas with them was an excellent opportunity for Japanese researchers to realize that both sides share common issues.

group photo