2010 VCCCAR visiting fellow

Friday, January 1, 2010

VCCCAR's inaugural visiting fellow was Rob Roggema from the Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands. Rob accepted a position as Senior Research Fellow at RMIT University and now has a lead role in the VCCCAR funded research project 'Design-led decision support for regional climate change'.  

A citizen of the Netherlands, Rob Roggema’s academic and employment history combines climate adaptation research as part of his PhD at Delft University with his role at the Province of Groningen as Manager, Strategy and Regional Planning and Program Manager, Climate Adaptation and Regional Planning.

Climate adaptation has been the main focus of Rob’s work since 2005 and the subject of his PhD-research since 2008. In addition to work and research Rob has written two books about climate adaptation, one in Dutch Tegenhouden of Meebewegen (Withstand or Move Along, WEKA, 2007) and Adaptation to Climate Change: A Spatial Challenge (Springer, 2009).

Rob’s PhD research focuses on the way climate adaptation can be implemented in spatial planning processes. Due to the disparity between political and planning timeframes and the need for longer term planning cycles to develop and implement adaptation strategies, Rob’s research postulates the need for a new planning paradigm which he calls ‘swarm planning’. As a program manager for climate adaptation and spatial planning at the regional government of Groningen province , he has led a project seeking to unite science and policy and develop a spatial adaptation plan, where measures that meet long term climatic changes are designed and researched.

Rob’s research interests include comparative approaches to climate adaptation implementation in Australia and the Netherlands. One of his research objectives when he was the VCCCAR Visiting Fellow was to compare the Dutch and Australian planning systems and to research the application and implementation of the planning paradigm (‘swarm planning’ for climate adaptation) in the Australian context, with particular emphasis on its relevance to Victorian organisations and the Australian climate adaptation research community. A visitor to Australia on several occasions; in 2008 he was awarded the best theoretic paper presented at the World Sustainable Building Conference (SB08).

Additional roles include representing Groningen Province on an international working group project to ‘climate proof’ Europe’s largest wetland, the Wadden Sea, and leading a project to climate proof Eemsdelta region, where the problem of a shrinking population and a decreasing level of facilities is tackled through implementation of adaptation strategies and measures.

Click here to learn more about Rob's presentation at the DSE Climate Change forum, held at the Royal Society of Victoria.