D. (Doris) van Halem D. (Doris) van Halem



Doris van Halem is Professor in Drinking Water Quality & Treatment at Delft University of Technology. Her research focusses on understanding contaminant behaviour in natural waters towards development of innovative and sustainable water treatment technologies. As program leader of Delft Global Initiative’s programme TU Delft | Water for Impact, she is responsible for stimulating water research in and with the Global South.
Dr. van Halem graduated from Delft University of Technology in Civil Engineering and Geosciences with a cum laude MSc degree, for which she received the Gijs Oskam award. In 2011 she completed her PhD research (cum laude) on subsurface iron and arsenic removal for drinking water supply in Bangladesh under the guidance of prof. J.C. van Dijk (TU Delft) and prof. dr. G.L. Amy (Unesco-IHE). This research was executed in close collaboration with UNICEF Bangladesh and DPHE (GoB), and awarded with the Steven Hoogendijk award for best experimental PhD dissertation by “Het Bataafsch Genootschap der Proefondervindelijke Wijsbegeerte”. In 2015, she received the UNESCO-L’Oreal For Women in Science award, followed by a research fellowship at KNAW NIAS. Dr. van Halem worked as a visiting researcher with the Sandec group at EAWAG (Zurich) and was visiting professor at Universidad de las Américas Puebla (Mexico). Since 2020, Dr. van Halem is NWO VIDI laureate, an excellence grant for academics. In 2022 she was appointed full professor.
The scientific research interests of Dr. van Halem are mainly related to the removal of contaminants of health concern for safe drinking water supply, where she is particularly intrigued how biological, chemical and physical mechanisms interact. Over the years she has worked on technologies, including, biological sand filters, ceramic membranes, dune/bank filtration, polymeric nanofiltration and electro-chemical water treatment.
Dr. van Halem is lecturing BSc course Introduction to Water Treatment (CTB3365) and she is responsible for the new MSc Environmental Engineering module Water Treatment Technologies (ENVM1600). Since 2013, Dr. van Halem has been a contributor to the development of the Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) on drinking water treatment ( to make water treatment knowledge freely available around the world.
Dr. van Halem is also active as speaker at popular events, such as her lecture “How to make drinking water from ditch water?” (in Dutch) for Universiteit van Nederland.

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