Towards Interactive Flood Governance: changing approaches in Dutch Flood Policy

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Abstract

Flooding of urban areas can have disastrous effects, both for people and infrastructure. Cities that are vulnerable to flooding continuously search for ways to reduce flood risks. During last decades of raising awareness about climate change, thinking about dealing with flood risks changed considerably, not in the last place in the low lands of the Netherlands. The conceptual turnover, change of paradigm or transition, suits in a broader development towards integrated, interactive and adaptive water management. The change in perspectives on urban flood management is the central theme of this paper. The analysis is based on theoretical insights from public administration, transition management and evolutionary thinking on changes in system equilibrium. Objective is to contribute to the understanding of developments in urban flood governance. Results are based on theoretical perspective in contemporary literature, underpinned by an analysis of Dutch policy documents on water and flood management and in-depth interviews with decision-makers and professional water managers. It appears that the time is there now for a transition towards sustainable urban flood governance.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationRegional Development, Spatial Planning and Strategic Governance
EditorsM Vujosevic, S Milijic
Place of PublicationBelgrade
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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