In response to extreme flood events and an increasing awareness that traditional flood control measures alone are inadequate to deal with growing flood risks, spatial flood risk management strategies have been introduced. These strategies do not only aim to reduce the probability and consequences of floods, they also aim to improve local and regional spatial qualities. To date, however, research has been largely ignorant as to how spatial quality, as part of spatial flood risk management strategies, can be successfully achieved in practice. Therefore, this research aims to illuminate how spatial quality is achieved in planning practice. This is done by evaluating the configurations of policy instruments that have been applied in the Dutch Room for the River policy program to successfully achieve spatial quality. This policy program is well known for its dual objective of accommodating higher flood levels as well as improving the spatial quality of the riverine areas. Based on a qualitative comparative analysis, we identified three successful configurations of policy instruments. These constitute three distinct management strategies: the “program‐as‐guardian”, the “project‐as‐driver,” and “going all‐in” strategies. These strategies provide important leads in furthering the development and implementation of spatial flood risk management, both in the Netherlands and abroad.
Publication | Busscher, T., Van den Brink, M. & Verweij, S. (2019). Strategies for integrating water management and spatial planning: Organizing for spatial quality in the Dutch ‘Room for the River’ program. Journal of Flood Risk Management, 12 (1), e12448.