Connecting science and policy in Dutch coastal management: The role of system understanding and conceptual models

Research output: ThesisDissertation (TU Delft)

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Globally coasts are under pressure owing to stressors such as human use and climate change. From the 1970s onwards, Integrated Coastal Management gradually emerged as a strategic approach that strives for sustainable integration of the sometimes conflicting interests of human use, natural values and protection against flooding. Developing and implementing effective integrated (coastal) policy requires meaningful interaction between policymakers and scientists. However, bridging the gap between science and policy remains problematic. Developing, implementing and conducting research specifically for policy is an ongoing challenge for both coastal managers and scientists. Therefore, the central question in my research is: How can we connect science and policy in support of sustainable coastal management, not at a global scale, but regionally in the Netherlands?

This research has two parts. The first part examines how the policy-oriented Coastal Genesis 2 research programme has influenced Dutch coastal policy and management. Specifically, it analyses how the programme has contributed to bridging the gap between science and policy. The (revised) conceptual model of the long-term sediment budget of the Dutch coast plays a central role in the analysis. The second part of the research addresses one of the most important uncertainties in this conceptual model, namely the long-term morphological development of the Dutch Wadden Sea.
Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
Awarding Institution
  • Delft University of Technology
  • Slinger, J.H., Supervisor
  • Wang, Z.B., Supervisor
Thesis sponsors
Award date31 May 2024
Print ISBNs978-94-6384-581-6
Publication statusPublished - 2024


  • Coastal management
  • Wadden Sea
  • Sediment budget
  • Policy analysis
  • ASMITA modelling
  • Conceptual models


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