« Youth for the Rhine »


1st initiative led by and for young people to tackle the challenges related to water and climate change in Europe

Deutsche Ecke, Koblenz. Photo by Pieter van de Sande on Unsplash

Youth for the Rhine is a youth-led initiative intended to motivate younger generations across the Rhine Basin in addressing one of Europe’s major societal issues: climate adaptation and the diverse issues of water, food, and energy.

This initiative is driven by the directorate-General for Public Works and Water Management “Rijkswaterstaat“, Rhine Commission for Hydrology, the Netherlands IHP-HWRP Committee, Water Youth Network and IHE Delft. Youth for the Rhine  is now in its creation and kick-off phase.

Invited by UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Hydrological Program, the UNESCO-SIMEV Chair has joined the initiative together with the universities of Cologne and Wageningen. SIMEV is an active member of the various steering committees acting as focal point for its academic network as well as its technical expertise.

An international multidisciplinary knowledge-sharing platform for youth

The first goal of Youth for the Rhine is the establishment of an international and multidisciplinary network of young professionals and students in the countries of the Rhine basin.

The second goal is the cocreation of innovative ideas, projects and insights for local water-food-energy-plastic issues. It should therefore lead to a bottom-up strategy for climate adaptation in the river Rhine basin.

A European youth participation

The Water Youth Network is a global and multidisciplinary connector of active young people in the water sector. This network aims to promote inclusion, innovation and a collaborative spirit. In this sense, it organizes  intergenerational meetings, exchanges and trainings.

SIMEV involved in core structure of the project

The Chair is involved in the two technical committees on water quality monitoring and participative construction for the involvement of European and Montpellier youth contributing to water management solutions through SIMEV experts on technical and academic capacity building programmes.

To support actions of communication within its networks enhancing the consultation of the younger generations, SIMEV is also part of the communication and dissemination committee.

Erasmus Mundus Master students involved

As first result, the Chair enabled involvement of students from the Erasmus Mundus Master in Membrane Engineering for a sustainable world EM3E-4SW. This Master offered at the University of Montpellier is supervised by Prof André Ayral and Inmaculada Dosuna.

Thus, students Alaaeldin Elozeiri, Santiago Martínez, Sena Yaltur and Yekatrina Tskhe became the first young professionals involved in the Youth for the Rhine project. The report “Water quality monitoring in large river basins: the Rhine” is the result of their work.

Discover their report on the various factors determining the quality of the Rhine and influencing its ecosystem.