Every year, the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation awards the Humboldt Research Award to up to 100 internationally recognised researchers for their work to date. The researchers are distinguished by the fact that they have had a lasting impact on their own discipline as well as on their specific field of work. The award winners are thus given the opportunity to carry out a research project with colleagues at institutions in Germany, because the prize is conferred exclusively on scientists who live and work abroad.
Prof. Dr. Jeroen Aerts from the VU Amsterdam (Netherlands) has now recently been awarded with the Humboldt Research Award. With his host Prof. Dr. Bruno Merz from the GFZ, the head of Section 4.4 - Hydrology, he will focus on the topic of hydrological extremes and risks, among others. One goal is to better understand and model the connection between human influence in relation to flood risks. The scientists merge data, models and expertise to develop approaches that include human behaviour and adaptation measures in flood risk assessments. Changes in vulnerability and human behaviour are of great importance as they can determine whether an extreme flood will have catastrophic consequences or not.
Prof. Dr. Jeroen Aerts studied Physical Geography at the Institute for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Dynamics at the University of Amsterdam (UvA) and received his PhD in Spatial Optimisation Techniques and Decision Support Systems in 2002. From 2015 to 2020, Jeroen Aerts headed the oldest environmental research institute in the Netherlands, the Institute for Environmental Studies (IVM). Aerts has now taken over as head of the 'Water and Climate Risk' department at this institute.