I did my MSc earth sciences at the Free University of Amsterdam (1989), gained experience with geophysics while following courses at Utrecht, and did a PhD in remote sensing at Wageningen University (1995). After a year working in consultancy as a geophysics expert I started my career at the Faculty ITC of the University of Twente.
While at UT-Faculty ITC, I worked part time at the University of Delft as professor in the Faculty CITG (1999-2004) and I worked part time as professor at the Faculty of Geosciences of Utrecht University (2004-2009). At UT Faculty ITC I have led the earth sciences department and at present am the Vice Dean education for the Faculty ITC. Since 10 years or so I am the editor-in-chief of the International Journal of Applied earth observation and Geoinformation and I edit a book series for Springer on remote sensing and digital image processing.
My area of interest is geothermal energy; energy from the heat of the earth. I work on geothermal systems in Netherlands, Indonesia, Kenya, Tanzania and New Zealand. As such, I am regularly involved in discussions about energy transition at science and policy level which has great interest to me. These discussions often not only focus on emissions and renewable energy but also on the related climate issues, disasters and hazards and the water-energy-food nexus. I tend to take the earth science process modeling perspective as well as the engineering perspective and am very interested to explore how far we can engineer a resilient society.
From 1 April 2020 onward I take up the position of Dean of the Faculty ITC and from that position want to promote, support, assist the 4TU resilience network and initiative both from an academic as well as an governance perspective.