The Netherlands: Rotterdam Hosts Floodrisk 2012
Floodrisk 2012, the second European Conference on flood risk management that was held from 20 November to 22 November in Rotterdam, attracted over 500 participants from 40 different countries.
Not only European countries were represented; participants also came from Africa, the United States and the Far East. Floodrisk 2012 was organised by Deltares, HR Wallingford and the research programme Flood Control 2015.
During dozens of sessions participants were informed about flood risks, innovations and how to manage them. The purpose of Floodrisk is to unite scientists, field workers and policy makers who run into issues dealing with flood risks. According to Annemargreet de Leeuw, a flood risk specialist at Deltares and coordinator of Floodrisk 2012, those objectives were successfully met. ‘In practice that connection is not self-evident, even though it is needed for good management. Technical measures and scientific developments cannot be seen as separate from policy and social processes. During the sessions you could see conversation starting between the different groups, so we feel the conference was very successful.’
There was a lot of attention on serious games to do with flooding during the convention. Deltares had set up a gaming room where participants could hone their flood risk management skills by playing various games.
There was also a special contest that was organised by Flood Control 2015, in which international students were challenged to develop a new game to do with flood control. Time was limited: they only had 24 hours. A total of 25 students participated, split up into six teams.
The prize was awarded to the game Bangkok Be Aware. The game revolved around using Facebook in the event of an imminent Bangkok flood. According to the judges it not only provides a good way of informing people, but it also stimulates the involvement of citizens to ensure more efficiently controlled floods.
Press Release, December 4, 2012