Good Soils for Water Management

Soils play a crucial role in the hydrological cycle and in agricultural food production. Smart soil management contributes to the adaptation to climate changes by the reduction of drought effects the prevention to ponding and flooding, the improvement of the utilization of nutrients by crops, the reduction of nutrient losses to surface waters and thereby to a more robust water system and an increase in agricultural production.

Pilots to measure the effects of measures to improve soil quality focus on:

  • The increase of the soil organic matter content
  • Deeper rooting
  • Crop rotation and land management
  • Soil tillage practices

    In close cooperation with stakeholders the project ‘Good soils for a robust water system’ measures and models the effects of these soil improving measures on the water- and nutrient balances of soils. These effects will be extrapolated to the catchment scale in order to select site-specific (cost-) effective measures.


    The results of the project will be used to optimise agricultural practices and to select additional measures.


    • Experimental data;
    • Applied models and tools;
    • Methods to quantify the impact of measures on soil structure, water transport and crop production;
    • Overview of promising (cost)effective measures to prevent soil degradation and to improve soil quality.

    Further application possibilities

    The resulting knowledge and methods used can be applied in other catchments/regions/countries to optimize the use of the available resources and to improve agricultural food production.