IWRA TASK FORCES

LAND4FLOOD Task Force

The LAND4FLOOD Task Force was formed to focus on natural flood retention and resilience on private land.

Climate change increases the frequency and intensity of future flood events, leading to higher costs of flood damage and increasing public demand for protective measures. Traditional flood protection measures, mainly based on grey infrastructure (i.e. dikes, dams, etc.), are not sufficient to cope with dynamic flood risk alone. Nature-based solutions (NBS) such as Natural Water Retention Measures (NWRM) are promising options to mitigate flood risks as a complement to grey infrastructure—both for flood retention and resilience. These types of measures reduce risks and also provide additional ecosystem services, including increased biodiversity and recreation opportunities. However, a common characteristic of green infrastructure measures is that they often claim more land than traditional methods. 

The challenge is to consider multifunctional land uses that enable temporary flood retention and flood storage on private land without restricting the provision of other ecosystem services.

 

The challenge is to consider multifunctional land uses that enable temporary flood retention and flood storage on private land without restricting the provision of other ecosystem services. The reconciliation of flood risk management and land policy is needed. Since all NBS/NWRM primarily need to be implemented on private land, the consideration of multiple aspects includes next to hydrological and water engineering issues (e.g. where and how to allocate and realize measures technically): economic issues (e.g. how to compensate for or incentivize flood retention services); property rights issues (e.g. how to allow temporary flood storage on private land); issues of governance (e.g. how to ensure the involvement of private landowners); and issues of public subsidies (e.g. how to integrate/mainstream flood retention in agricultural subsidies). 

The IWRA LAND4FLOOD Task Force focuses on natural flood retention and resilience on private land and aims to explore such different issues and their interrelation to establish a common platform for academics from different disciplines, decision-makers, landowners, and other stakeholders relevant for the topic.

Key Questions to be addressed are:
• Which synergies can be identified between different land uses and the provision of flood retention and respective ecosystem services?
• How can the knowledge base on advantages and potentials of NWRM, large-scale flood retention, and resilient cities be strengthened, and their importance communicated to different actors at the local, regional, and catchment levels?
• How can landowners be encouraged to adapt land uses which allow for increased water retention capacity?
• How can public and private stakeholders in urban and rural areas engage with each other to reduce flood damage through a comprehensive management plan based on the implementation of retention and resilience measures throughout the catchment?

The IWRA LAND4FLOOD Task Force is initially mainly composed of former COST Action members (CA16209). The Task Force aims to include new members as well. The Task Force will sustain mutual productive collaboration, networking, and collaboration with IWRA. Please refer to Appendix for the terms and conditions for participation in IWRA task forces. 

The Task Force Bureau serves as the governing body for the Task Force. Bureau members develop a strategy and timeline for the work of the Task Force and will guide the development and implementation of Task Force activities. 

For the transition period 2022 – 2023 the Task Force Bureau consists of 9 members for the former COST action Core Group (all core group members expressing their interest were included): 

For the transition period 2022 – 2023 the Task Force Bureau consists of 9 members for the former COST action Core Group (all core group members who expressed their interest were included): 

  • Lenka Slavíková (Chair)
  • Thomas Hartmann (Vice-Chair)
  • Johan Barstad (Secretary general and communication officer)
  • Arthur Schindelegger (PhD Coordinator)
  • Kristina Veidemane (stakeholder liaison)
  • Nejc Bezak (work group leader)
  • Antje Bornschein (work group co-leader)
  • Sally Priest (work group leader)
  • Dennis Collentine (work group leader)

From 2023 onwards, a governance structure will be established with elected positions of the Task Force Bureau:

  1. Chair
  2. Vice-Chair
  3. Secretary general & communication officer
  4. PhD coordinator
  5. Stakeholder liaison
  6. Work group leaders (appointed)

The Chair and Vice-Chair are the formal representatives and facilitate the work of the Task Force. They are in charge of communication with IWRA. They are also responsible for the line-up of conferences. The Secretary-General and communication officer supports the Task Force in administrative and communicative matters (i.e. support with the website, membership management, etc.), the Ph.D. coordinator organizes activities for the young academics in the network (such as Ph.D. meetings at the annual conferences, potentially including a Ph.D. workshop next to the conferences). The Stakeholder liaison establishes connections with practice. Workgroup leaders are appointed. They organize sub-groups around specific topics.

Bi-annual elections by Task Force Bureau members are organized at general assemblies of the annual conferences or online. The positions shall be filled in for a term of 2 years. The member can serve two terms (4 years) the maximum at one position. In addition to the elected positions, the Task Force Bureau may appoint liaisons for specific purposes (such as establishing connections with other networks). The local organizers of the conferences of the previous and next conferences become appointed members of the Bureau. includes next to hydrological and water engineering issues (e.g. where and how to allocate and realize measures technically): economic issues (e.g. how to compensate for or incentivize flood retention services); property rights issues (e.g. how to allow temporary flood storage on private land); issues of governance (e.g. how to ensure the involvement of private landowners); and issues of public subsidies (e.g. how to integrate/mainstream flood retention in agricultural subsidies). 

The timing of specific tasks will evolve as the work progresses but there are some specific milestone dates as indicated in Table 1. The most important activity is the annual conference around September each year. The annual conference and adjacent Ph.D. workshop will be held in different locations. In years where the IWRA World Water Congress is held, the events can be combined or LAND4FLOOD organises special sessions at the IWRA congress. The conferences are self-financed events. Ph.D. students and Members of the Task Force Bureau are eligible for a reduced fee.

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