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Research profile

Willem K. Korthals Altes (1964) is Professor in Land development (since 1997) and is currently at the department Management in the Built Environment at the Faculty Architecture and the Built Environment. Earlier positions at TU Delft has been at OTB Research for the Built Environment, the Faculty of Technology, Policy and Management and the department of Geodetic Engineering. 

Willem's research interests relate to the Governance of land development, which is about the interaction between planning, property rights and property markets, the governance of the relationship between private interests of landowners and common societal goals. Current research topics are the following.

  • The authorities as land developers,
  • new land development legislation,
  • the Europeanization of the governance of land development,
  • access to land and rural development,
  • the legal complexities of modern land use,
  • innovative and participatory land policy instruments and
  • bridging internal and external effectiveness towards a legitimate governance of land development.


Between 1995 and 2003 Willem has also worked in practice as (senior) consultant and later partner with Kolpron Consultants and (after merger with NEI and Ecotec) Ecorys in Rotterdam. In 1995 he has finished his PhD (Cum Laude) at the University of Amsterdam on a research project financed by NWO (the Dutch Science Foundation) and supervised by Professor Andreas Faludi on national spatial planning in the Netherlands. He has done (1989-1990) research on urban planning between 1919 and 1934 in Vienna at TU Vienna with a Research grant of the Austrian ministry. He holds a masters degree in planning (cum laude) at University of Amsterdam

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities
  • SDG 15 - Life on Land


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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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