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Are your students concerned about climate change? During classroom activities, have they ever shown interest in water challenges and how to find water-smart and climate-efficient solutions for resilient cities? Are they interested in digital tools, and do they see it as a potential solution to managing work with nature to create more sustainable models? Then they might be interested in pursuing a career in civil engineering, landscape architecture, or even adaptive urban development and become a leading professional in water resilient cities! Curious to know more about this career path? Meet Nanco Dolman, a Leading Professional in Water Resilient Cities!

Interview for the STE(A)M IT Repository of STEM Jobs profiles with Nanco Dolman, a Leading Professional in Water Resilient Cities.


Find out about the key skills to become a Leading Professional in Water Resilient Cities.


As a leading professional in Water Resilient Cities, in a project, you are the person whose expertise will allow them to “advice to our clients”. Being a consultant in your team also means addressing issues and needs and collect the necessary data to come up with solutions to meet your clients’ requirements.


Professionals working on Nature-based solutions, such as Water Resilient Cities, are often “performing feasibility studies, modelling nature-based solutions to determine performance and effects and participate as a practitioner in research projects”.


Working on nature-based solutions projects means involving professionals and stakeholders with different expertise. For the project to be successful, collaboration is key. “Implementing blue-green infrastructure and nature-based requires support and commitment of actors and stakeholders“.

System Analysis

System analysis is like the foundation of nature-based solutions leading professionals’ work. Regular tasks are, for example: “water system analysis to understand how the natural system works and how urbanisation and climate change affects the natural balance“.


With both water and climate change that may trigger the next financial crisis, a leading professional’s challenge in the field of nature-based solutions is to promote knowledge development, cooperation and finance. “…little tangible action has been taken to address climate change adaptation and the water crisis. So many plans are produced, and strategies have been developed. And many cities and regions lack sufficient resources and knowledge, including nature-based solutions”.


If you decide to become a leading professional in water resilient cities, you might have to adapt your training to the upcoming sector’s challenges and needs. “We need more young professional who can sit between delta design, delta engineering and delta governance”. There, you might want to “choose a study or specialization you like”, but also “try to find your place in between the traditional disciplines”.

Meet Nanco Dolman,
Leading Professional in Water Resilient Cities

Nanco Dolman is a leading professional in Water Resilient Cities at Royal HaskoningDHV, with a Master of Science (MSc) in Civil Engineering from Delft University of Technology (1998), specialized in water management
in urban areas. Fascinated by water, Nanco sees it “as the driving force in nature”, but also as a “connecting challenge in making cities resilient with nature as the inspiration for climate and multifunctional solutions, becomes a way of looking at cities and at how to make them climate- and future-proof”.
As a leading professional in Water Resilient Cities, the emphasis of his job lies in the search for nature-based solutions to ensure sustainable water management, improve climate resilience and enhance liveability.


In this seventh episode of our STE(A)M IT STEM Careers Podcast, Cecilia Marziali from European Schoolnet spoke with Nanco Dolman, a leading professional in Water Resilient Cities at Royal HaskoningDHV!

Seeing water as the driving force in nature and being a strong believer in the power of bridging disciplines, Nanco told us about a typical working day in his job in his field. He also explained what particular experiences led him to follow a career path in what he calls the blue-green sectorHis words to students? “It is a story about nature and moving towards an ecological lifestyle. After all, we are all part of an ecosystem”. Listen to the podcast and find out more!

CC BY 4.0: all the materials and content presented on this STEM Job profile have been co-created by STE(A)M IT, a project funded by the European Union’s ERASMUS+ programme project STE(A)M IT (Grant agreement 612845-EPP-1-2019-1- BE-EPPKA3-PI-FORWARD), in collaboration with the Nature-Based Solutions (NBS) phase 2, a pilot project initiated and funded by the European Commission Directorate-General for Research and Innovation. European Schoolnet (EUN) oversees the interviewing and creating of the NBS Career Sheets, with the support of VO EUROPE.


Vanessa James

I am a communication coordinator in the Science Education Department of European Schoolnet (EUN). Holding a BA degree in Public relations and digital communications, I am passionate about graphic design, photography, web development and content management.