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Henry David Venema

Henry David Venema

Director of Planning, Prairie Climate Centre

Dr. Henry David (Hank) Venema is a professional engineer with a diverse natural resource background spanning water resources, agriculture, energy, climate change mitigation and adaptation, rural development, ecosystem management, environmental economics and environmental finance.

From 2004 to 2013, Dr. Venema has led IISD’s research on water and agricultural issues in pioneering the application of natural capital principles to water management challenges in Western Canada. In 2009, he led the creation of IISD’s Water Innovation Centre with an initial mandate to build a strategic vision for Lake Winnipeg Basin management based on leading-edge policy, management and technological concepts.

Dr. Venema has collaborated with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the Global Water Systems Project, the Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the International Development Research Centre (IDRC), the Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency, and the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA). In Canada, he has worked with the federal departments of Environment, Agriculture and Natural Resources, and within Manitoba, for the provincial departments of Water Stewardship and Conservation.

His research has appeared in the Canadian Journal of Water Resources, Water International, the Journal of Hydrology, Water Resources Development, the Journal of Environmental Management, Mitigation and Adaptation Strategies for Global Change and Global Environmental Change, Biomass and Bioenergy, European Journal of Operations Research, and Annals of Operations Research. His research has been widely cited by the IPCC's Third and Fourth Assessment Reports on Climate Change Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability. Dr. Venema also served as an expert consultant on cross-cutting issues and as a Working Group 2 (Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability) reviewer for the IPCC's Fourth Assessment Report.

Dr. Venema's PhD research concerns landscape-based systems models for integrated rural development and climate change mitigation and adaptation. Dr. Venema's field experience includes lengthy assignments with Environment et Development Action (ENDA) in Senegal, and The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) in India. Dr. Venema has also lived and worked in Sweden and Ethiopia on research and consulting assignments.

  • Education

    Ph in Systems Design Engineering (2004): University of Waterloo.

    Master of Sciences – Water Resources Engineering (1993): University of Ottawa.

    Bachelor of Science – Civil Engineering (1990): University of Manitoba.

    Bachelor of Science – Physics (1987): University of Winnipeg.