​Dr. Patrick Huntjens

Senior Researcher

Dr. Patrick Huntjens is an expert on water diplomacy, focusing on issues related to the prevention and resolution of water-related disputes around the globe. Huntjens has worked in over 38 countries and has developed practical experience on water and climate related issues. He is also an accomplished international academic.

Dr. Patrick Huntjens is Senior Researcher for the water diplomacy initiative at the Institute. He tackles issues related to the governance, law, prevention and resolution of water-related disputes around the globe.

Dr. Huntjens has a multi-disciplinary background, including a Ph.D. (magna cum laude) in Complex System Sciences and Policy Sciences, and two Masters degrees in Biology and Political Science & International Relations (cum laude).

Before joining the Institute, Dr. Huntjens was Director of the Water Partner Foundation, a non-profit organisation established in The Hague. In recent years, Dr. Huntjens was leading several international projects on water diplomacy, water governance and climate change adaptation in the Middle East, South East Asia, Eastern Europe and Africa.

In the past 15 years, Dr. Huntjens has been working in 38 countries, assigned by a wide variety of clients, e.g. European Commission, United Nations, World Bank, National Governments of The Netherlands, Pakistan, Turkey, Kosovo, Vietnam, and several NGO’s. As such he has developed expertise and practical experience on (adaptive) water governance and institutions, water diplomacy and negotiations, international relations, participatory and strategic planning, climate change adaptation, disaster risk reduction, adaptive and integrated water resource management, capacity building, and institutional strengthening.

Dr. Huntjens’ Water Management and Water Governance in a Changing Climate (2011) has been published in several languages, and has been endorsed by the 2009 Nobel Prize Winner in Economics, Prof. Dr. Elinor Ostrom. The work strengthens the conceptual foundations and practical value of adaptive approaches to water management and water governance in a changing climate. On the basis of a broad comparative analysis of policies and practices in Europe, Asia, Africa and Australia, it focuses on the capacity of management regimes to cope with the two most common extreme weather events: floods and droughts.

Dr. Huntjens has also published many peer-reviewed articles in renowned international journals, a wide range of book chapters, consultancy reports, and policy reports and has made a number of media appearances.

Topical and Regional Expertise: Conflict Prevention; Water Governance; Water Diplomacy; Water Resources Management; Mediation;, Negotiation; Climate change; Climate Change Adaptation; Water security; Climate Security; water-food-energy nexus; Disaster Risk Reduction; Sustainable development; ecology; ecosystems; adaptive capacity; delta governance; resilience; Middle East; Africa; South East Asia; Australia; Europe; US; Palestine Territories; Israel; Jordan; Yemen; Vietnam; Thailand; India; Bangladesh; Pakistan; Rwanda; Uganda; South Africa, Botswana, Lesotho, Tanzania, Zanzibar, Kosovo.

Recent Publications:


Languages Spoken

  • Dutch
  • English
  • German

Current Projects

Completed: Water Conflicts in Yemen

Yemen is one of the poorest countries in the Arab region and is faced with political instability. An acute water crisis looms over the…


Past Initiative: Water Diplomacy Consortium

Water management and the fair distribution of water is an issue of growing importance on the international agenda. Building on the internationally renowned Dutch…


Recent Work