Water is one of the most important substances on Earth. It is essential to many of the things we need and enjoy in life: food, transport and recreation, but managing it can also pose some serious challenges. Around the world water managers contend with droughts, floods, sea level rise, over fishing, pollution, plastic soup and many other risks to both our natural environment and our society. We need water managers to safeguard our future!

Educated with the latest knowledge from the field

During the water management programme you will develop in your own field of expertise as you focus on the major water-related issues facing us today and towards solutions for UN Sustainable Development Goals like freshwater availability, clean seas, food production, healthy ecosystems, biodiversity and coastal safety. HZ enjoys intensive working relationships with professionals in the water sector. You will be working on practical assignments provided by companies or research institutes from the very first day of your study. This is incredibly important, as this will thoroughly prepare you for your career. You will be educated with the latest knowledge from the field and you learn how to effectively combine theory and practice. Right from the start you will work on real-life cases discovering your interest and talents. After the first semester you can opt for one of these three study tracks: Aquatic Ecotechnology, Delta Management and Spatial Planning & Design.

Water Management is a top-rated programme

Water Management is a top-rated programme in the Netherlands, according to the Keuzegids 2024.

Study tracks

With the Water Management study programme you will have enough time to choose a track that suits you best. All three study tracks train you for a specialisation in Water Management. In the first six months you are taught some basic subjects and you find out what the three tracks entail. After that you make a choice for one of the tracks and in the second semester you will gain a deeper insight in your chosen track.

Aquatic Ecotechnology

You analyze the fresh and salt water issues in depth and suggest solutions to solve them from…

Delta Management

As a Delta Manager you integrate multiple disciplines to develop a vision on climate challenges in…

Spatial Planning & Design

You focus on adaptive planning and design of economically and socially dynamic areas under pressure…

What our students say

Do you want to know what our students think of the Water Management programme and why they chose this programme? Read the various experiences of our students.

Student Mathurin in the café of HZ
About the programme
Mathurin, Water Management Student

It is of utmost importance for me to protect this highly valuable resource that is water.

Read the full story from Mathurin
Sarah poses for the picture in the HZ building
About the programme Study at HZ
Sarah, Water Management Student

I decided to study in the Netherlands, because where can I learn the most about water other than in the Netherlands where they have been dealing with water-related issues for hundreds of years?

Read the full story from Sarah
Martijn sitting in the restaurant of HZ
About the programme
Martijn, Water Management Student

Later I want to focus on transforming urban area into more sustainable living environments

Read the full story from Martijn

Talk to an advisor

Do you have any questions about Water Management or practical matters? A student advisor might come in handy!

Contact them here

Water Management in 3 years

With your pre-university diploma (VWO) you can qualify for the English-language three-year track of the Water Management programme if you meet the admission requirements. If you opt for this track, you will be in a class with international students.

During the first semester you follow lectures together with the students who are doing the four-year programme. You get to know your fellow students and the water management programme, and you decide which specialisation you want to follow. Subsequently, you spend two six-month periods studying the specialisation of your choice. Halfway through the second year, you choose a minor, or you do an internship at home or abroad. Check the HZ minors here. In your final study year, you further deepen your knowledge and skills in your chosen field through projects and lectures, and you carry out a graduation research in the professional field.

Have you become passionate about your study and would you like to further develop yourself in your professional field? Would a Master programme be something for you? You could choose for the Master programme in River Delta Development, which is a collaboration of HZ University of Applied Sciences, Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences and Van Hall Larenstein. This way, you can obtain both your Bachelor and your Master’s degree in 5 years. Employers will be lining up for you upon graduation, because you are both practically and analytically trained.

Picture of Michelle in front of the canal with a bridge in the background
Michelle, River Delta Development Alumna

Michelle graduated from the River Delta Development master's programme

Portrait of Sabine, River Delta Development student
Sabine, River Delta Development Student

From bachelor to master: Sabine shares her experiences

The three-year study programme Water Management is taught in English. To be able to start in the second semester of the three-year track, you must have an average of 7.5 or higher on your grade list. If this is the case, you may decide, together with your Study Career Coach, whether the three-year track matches your wishes and requirements.

After applying for the Water Management programme, you will be invited for a study choice interview. In that interview you can indicate that you want to be considered for the three-year track.

Water Management explained

Do you want to help solving the problems caused by climate change? The HZ Water Management study programme will train you for this!
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Virtual tour

Take a look inside HZ University of Applied Sciences!


Have you made your choice? Read all about our application procedure.


To qualify for admission to the Water Management programme you need:

  • A qualification equivalent to a Dutch secondary education diploma, which gives you access to higher education.
  • A good knowledge of one or more of the following subjects is preferable: biology, chemistry, mathematics or economics.

Read more about the admission and language requirements.

Alternative entrance exam

If you don’t have the appropriate secondary school diploma, and if you are at least 21 years old, you may be exempted from this requirement. HZ provides the possibility of taking an alternative entrance exam.

Course description

Read more detailed course information in our Academic and Examination Regulation.

Fees and finances

Next to the tuition fees and cost of living there are extra costs for your study programme (study materials and books). These costs are approximately €300,- for the full study programme. You will have excursions on a regular basis. Read more about the fees and finances here.

Pre-arrival information and studying in The Netherlands

Visa, health insurance, accommodation and a Dutch bank account. You need to arrange quite some things when you decide to study abroad. Read all about it here. And what it's like to study in the Netherlands? And what is Middelburg like? Read all about Zeeland, the Netherlands and HZ.


Do you have any questions or do you need more information about the study programme? Please contact us: study@hz.nl.

After graduation

Congratulations, you're graduated! From now on you may use the title ‘Bachelor of Science’.

With your Water Management diploma, you can work for a company, but can also enter the non-profit sector. The jobs depend on your specialization. You can work on all levels of governmental bodies, water boards, or research institutes, at consultancies, engineering firms and industries.

Do you want to continue studying after your Water Management bachelor degree? Then there are several options.

  • River Delta Development
    With your HZ bachelor degree, you have direct access to the River Delta Development master programme at HZ. When you choose to enroll in this programme, you can obtain your bachelor and master degree in 6 years.
  • Continue studying in the Netherlands
    If you choose to continue at another university in the Netherlands, a pre-master may be required.
  • Continue studying abroad
    If you decide to continue studying abroad, you can often immediately enroll in a master programme with your HZ bachelor degree.
Portrait of Sabine, River Delta Development student
Sabine, River Delta Development Student

From bachelor to master: Sabine shares her experiences

Study in The Netherlands

Are you thinking of studying in Holland? An excellent choice! We tell you why in our brochure.

Are you interested in this programme?

Join one of our (online) study events!

Watch an online information session

Discover studying at HZ and our study programmes by watching these information sessions.

Online application

Made a choice? Simply apply for a programme via Studielink.

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