Among the twenty-four participants at the World Water Forum in Kyoto last
week were a number of Wageningen researchers. Some were there to present
their work, others to give their opinions in debates on water management.
Professor Wim van Vierssen, scientific director of the Environmental
Sciences Group, Wageningen UR, was one of the most prominent
representatives in Japan. He gave a keynote speech to a large audience on
the distribution of water between agriculture and nature. Van Vierssen
noted that the quality of fresh water in ecosystems has declined by half in
the last thirty years.
Van Vierssen suggested that the Netherlands, and particularly Wageningen UR
can offer much expertise in this area, especially on the relations between
water management and agriculture: “We need to claim our position. At
present much Dutch development finance goes to knowledge institutes in
other countries that do not work in an integrated fashion.