Dikes are the framework of the Dutch landscape. But even though there are so important, no book has been written about it. That is why the landscape architects of LOLA Landscape wrote it: Dutch Dikes. I contributed to this issue by writing an essay: dikes as a source of innovation.
A film, an app, an artwork, a Twitter-campaign, a product: those are just a few examples of social design with water. They can get an issue on the agenda, create a community and launch new products. For the book compiled by Anne van der Zwaag on social design, Looks Good Feels Good Is Good, I wrote the chapter on water. The world is ready for designers who, rather than adding yet another chair to what is already there, devote their time and creativity to solving the world’s (water) problems.
As the rest of the world is coming to terms with catastrophic floods and droughts, the Dutch are telling – and selling – what they have learned through centuries of experience. In his story, reporter Jeff Chu quotes me as a person “who best represents how Dutch thinking about water management has evolved over the past two decades”.
Foto’s Misha de Ridder
In the wake of Hurricane Sandy, PBS – the American Public Broadcasting System – came to the Netherlands to learn about the Dutch approach to water. How should the New York region protect itself from the next Sandy? Thanks to my book ‘Sweet&Salt: Water and the Dutch’ I was one of the people interviewed. I talked about the Dutch attitude to water as a ‘frenemy’. In Europe only the trailer can be viewed: ‘Nova: Megastorm Aftermath’.
A year after Crown Prince Willem Alexander accepted the first copy of ‘Sweet&Salt: Water and the Dutch’ and opened the exhibition in the Kunsthal in Rotterdam, the book – now in its third printing – is receiving prizes and praise. Read the article…
After Hurricane Sandy, the New York Times wrote an article ‘Going with the flow’ related to my book ‘Sweet&Salt”. It discusses how the Dutch approach to water management can serve as an example for the United States.