Dr.ir. A.M.J. (Miriam) Coenders

Dr.ir. A.M.J. (Miriam) Coenders



The land and the atmosphere are closely connected. From the land, water evaporates and adds moisture to the atmosphere, which in turn forms our rain. Additionally, evaporation costs energy and will lower the air temperature. Vegetation plays a major control in this interaction; however, how vegetation influences our water cycle and energy balance is poorly understood due to its dynamic behavior. Often vegetation (growth) has a season pattern (phenology), and responds in different ways to weather conditions and water shortages. Especially, in times of extremes like droughts and heatwaves, plants have very distinct survival strategies, which directly affects its water use and effects on air temperature.  

My research theme focusses on better understanding the role which vegetation has on the water- and energy balance. I do this, by combining different novel sensing techniques (e.g., distributed temperature sensingisotopic measurements) in different settings: forests, crop land, and urban land. With this I aim to answer questions like how vegetation behaves during droughts, and how e.g., extreme heat can be mitigated with adding vegetation to our living environment.

Since 2010, I work at the Water Resources Section of the Watermanagement Department, where I supervise many BSc, MSc, and PhD students. I am the track coordinator of Water Resources Engineering, part of our MSc program Environmental Engineering. Additionally, I am responsible for the 'Stepping Stone' module (ENVM1400) and teach in the BSc-courses 'Hydrology' (CTB2420) and 'Meten aan Water' (CT3412). Furthermore, I am active in EGU and am an (associate) editor for the international journals Hydrology and Earth System Sciences and Water Resources Research

For more information about my work and background, I refer to my personal homepage: http://www.miriamcoenders.nl



  • NWO ASPASIA [2021] Related to VIDI-proposal: Spider webbing the land-atmosphere
  • Outstanding Editor Award 2019 of Hydrology and Earth System Sciences journal
  • NWO-ALW Veni 2015 “Detecting the invisible water drain: evaporation” (863.15.022): 250.000 euro
  • Best poster award 2006 of Water Research Centre Delft
  • Grant ‘Fonds National de la Recherche Luxembourg’ BFR05/089 (2005-2009)

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