Johan C. (Han) Winterwerp

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Associate fellow, Prof. Johan C. (Han) Winterwerp

Associate Expert

Associate Experts

My name is Johan C. Winterwerp (nickname Han) and I joined Wetlands International early 2018. I have a PhD in civil engineering. Before this, I was affiliated for almost 40 years to Deltares (formerly Delft Hydraulics) as senior expert and to Delft University of Technology, the Netherlands as professor on the chair of Sediment Dynamics.

Throughout my career I worked on estuarine and coastal waters, focusing on their shallow areas (e.g. the wetlands). Though my background is in physics, I have participated in many multi-disciplinary projects, collaborating with chemists, biologists, ecologists, etc. I specialised on morphodynamics and the transport of fine, cohesive sediment in lakes, riverine, estuarine and coastal environments, while building up experience on the behaviour of mangrove-mud coasts.
I have executed many hydrodynamic, hydro-thermal, hydro-sedimentological and hydro-morphological studies across the world as project leader and as expert in multi-disciplinary project teams, using the various mathematical models developed by Deltares (Delft Hydraulics), and supervising field surveys and laboratory analyses. Amongst these are sediment transport studies for the ports and access channels of Rotterdam (the Netherlands), Antwerp (Belgium), Emden/Papenburg and Hamburg (Germany), Nantes (France), Cochin (India) and the Morebaya River (Guinea). I carried out studies on the sediment dynamics in Neva Bay (Russia), the Segara Anakan Lagoon (Indonesia), the Yangtze estuary and the Yellow River (China), the Humber estuary (UK), the Amazon River and Patos Lagoon (Brazil) and the Atchafalaya estuary and Passaic River (USA). Since 15 years I work on ICZM and Building with Nature solutions for managing the mangrove-mud coasts of Thailand, Guyana, Suriname, Bangladesh and Indonesia. I am one the initiators of the Building with Nature project in Indonesia.

I have been dedicated to basic research into the behaviour and properties of fine cohesive sediments at Delft University of Technology. My contributions to solving complex mud problems are therefore always based on state-of-the-art science and tools. I am author / co-author of more than 140 publications in scientific journals and reference books and contributed to many international conferences – these publications have been cited over 5,000 times. Though retired, I still supervise a number of PhD-studies at Delft University of Technology.
I have also a long track record on teaching, for instance the advanced (post-)graduate course on Sediment Dynamics at Delft University of Technology. Based on this course, I developed short courses, which I taught in the USA, China, Brazil and Belgium.