In January 2018, we will welcome our new researcher Arnaud Sterckx. The Belgian has recently obtained his PhD degree in Earth Sciences at the Université Laval in Quebec City, Canada, and he is already looking forward to strenghten the IGRAC team. "I want to get involved into a large range of applied projects of groundwater research and management", he says. "There is so much to be done, let’s see if I can be of any use!" In the short interview below, you get to know our new Researcher a bit better.
What is your academic background?
"I first got a B.Sc. in Geology and another in Geography at the Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) in Belgium, soon followed by a M.Sc. during which I trained as a hydrogeologist. My M.Sc. project was dedicated to a small karstic catchment in Belgium. In addition, I did an Erasmus exchange at the University of Utrecht (UU) in the Netherlands and a field campaign of geophysics in northern Ethiopia. I then moved to Canada to further specialize into hydrogeology at the Université Laval, where I got a second M.Sc. and a Ph.D. My M.Sc. thesis was about the factors controlling wells yield in crystalline rocks of the region north to Ottawa, while my Ph.D. project aimed at determining the impact of past glaciations on groundwater flow in the northern Baltic Artesian Basin (in Estonia and Latvia), by the means of numerical models."
What is your work experience?
"I was a teaching assistant at Laval University for 4 years and I organised a scientific conference in Quebec City (Canada) in 2013."
Why did you apply at IGRAC?
"I applied at IGRAC for the same reason I started studying Hydrogeology: groundwater is a major water resource on which so many communities rely for their socioeconomic development. It is therefore not just a matter of science, it is also a social challenge, and I believe that you need to account for the multiple facets of groundwater if you want to improve its management. This is what we do at IGRAC, through a series of projects ranging from groundwater assessment to governance, from groundwater monitoring to capacity-building, etc."