Jeroen Aerts, winner of AGU’s 2019 Gilbert F. White Distinguished Award
Jeroen Aerts

Dr. Jeroen Aerts is the director of the Institute for Environmental Studies at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam in the Netherlands and is head of the Water and Climate Risk department, having an internationally leading position in the field of water risk modeling. With a B.Sc. in physical geography and a Ph.D. in hydrology and operations research, conducted at the University of Amsterdam, and as a visiting scientist at the University of California, Santa Barbara, Dr. Aerts has been active in water- and climate-related risk for almost 30 years, including as strategic adviser at the Deltares institute, the Netherlands. Dr Aerts pioneered modeling approaches coupling physical climate–water models with human behavioral methods, integrating multidisciplinary methods from hydrology and (behavioral) economics. Dr Aerts coinitiated the first large-scale climate adaptation research program in the Netherlands (Klimaat voor Ruimte, 110 million euros); was the scientific coordinator of the Connecting Delta Cities initiative under the Clinton C40 global cities network; coauthored the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development report on water security; was a member of the evaluation committee of the National Flood Insurance Program of the U.S. National Research Council; was adviser to Mayor Michael Bloomberg of New York City on flood risk resilience issues, before and in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy; and designed a climate adaptation plan for the city of Los Angeles to reduce the effects from sea level rise. His scientific work includes 166 peer-reviewed papers, including 18 in high-impact journals. His research was recognized by winning the prestigious personal NWO-VICI grant (1.5 million euros); best paper awards of the Journal of Risk Analysis in 2012 and 2013 and the Journal of Flood Risk Management in 2016; and the Lloyd’s Science of Risk Prize in 2014 for his paper on flood risk in New York City, published in Science.


(2020), Aerts receives 2019 Gilbert F. White Distinguished Award, Eos, 101, Published on 14 September 2020.

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