Dr. Gül Özerol is a policy scientist, concerned with the sustainable and equitable governance of natural resources. She holds a PhD degree in Governance for Sustainability from the University of Twente, an MSc degree in Integrated Assessment from the University of Osnabrück, Germany, and BSc and MSc degrees in Industrial Engineering from the Middle East Technical University, Turkey.
For over 20 years, she has been researching and teaching in diverse social and political contexts, mainly in the Middle East and Europe. A core value in her work is co-creation of knowledge with societal stakeholders, ranging from local and regional authorities in the North Sea Region, to ministries and NGOs in Palestine. Her research expertise and recognition in water, energy and climate governance relies on local, national and international collaborations.
She supervises PhD and postdoctoral researchers and BSc and MSc students, and teaches courses and gives guest lectures that often connect with her research interests. Since 2022, she serves as the educational director of MEEM, the MSc programme in Environmental and Energy Management.
Dr. Gül Özerol is keen to improve the scientific and practical foundations of governance and infrastructure studies by applying comparative and transdisciplinary research methods. She has gained experience and recognition in actor-based and institutional analysis of natural resource governance, focusing on water, energy and land resources. Over the past 20 years, she participated in and managed collaborative projects in Europe, North America, Middle East and North Africa, and gained local experience in Turkey, Palestine, the Netherlands, Germany and the United States.
- Ann-Katrin Ellermann: Comparison of participatory and collaborative approaches to water governance in Europe (ongoing)
- Amro Wawi: Data governance and digitalisation in water management, Palestine (ongoing)
- Franziska Baack: Climate change adaptation and stakeholder engagement in the cities of Overijssel, the Netherlands (ongoing)
- Juliane Schillinger: Comparative analysis of the impacts of armed conflict on local water management systems in the Middle East (ongoing)
- Adnan Mirhanoglu: A socio-material approach to water access struggles of smallholder farmers - Co-shaping actors, institutions, and infrastructures in Ağlasun, Turkey (with KU Leuven, completed in 2023)
- Marielle Feenstra: Gender just energy policy - Engendering the energy transition in Europe (completed in 2021)
- Latif Mohammadzadeh: Climate change adaptation and farmer decision making in the Urmia Lake basin, Iran (guest researcher in 2019)
- César Casiano Flores: Context matters - Water governance assessment of the wastewater treatment plant policy in Central Mexico (completed in 2017)
- Water, energy and climate governance, focusing on local and national levels
- Just transitions, focusing on gender and intersectionality
- Transdisciplinary and comparative research methods
UT Research Information System
Google Scholar Link
Main educational activities of Dr. Gül Özerol take place within MEEM, the MSc programme in Environmental and Energy Management. Since 2022, she serves as the educational director of the programme. She also co-teaches and coordinates the Water Management, Rurban Commons and Research Proposal courses within the programme, and supervises students in MEEM and other programmes.
Over the past 10 years, she has contributed to various BSc and MSc programmes within and outside the University of Twente by designing and giving courses and co-supervising students on topics related to her research interests, such as urban water management, participatory irrigation management, gender equity in water governance, and climate adaptation in rural and urban areas.
Affiliated Study Programmes
Courses Academic Year 2023/2024
Courses Academic Year 2022/2023
Dr. Gül Özerol is the project manager for the University of Twente in GOVAQUA (2023-2027), an EU Horizon Europe project on innovations for a transition to a sustainable and equitable water governance. She is leading the work package on participatory and collaborative approaches and co-leading the workpackage on transitions to sustainable and equitable water governance.
She was the project manager for the University of Twente and work package leader in CATCH (2017-2022) and C5a (2019-2022), EU Interreg projects on climate resilience in the North Sea Region, and in CATCH+ (2018-2021), a spin-off of the CATCH project focusing on the Province of Overijssel. All three projects involved close collaboration with local, reigonal and national authorities in Belgium, Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands, Sweden and the UK.
From 2013 until 2020, she was the coordinator of the Palestinian-Dutch Academic Cooperation Programme on Water (PADUCO) that involved six universities from Palestine and five universities from the Netherlands. She also participated in seven projects, focusing on her research interests, such as water governance assessment, climate adaptation in agriculture, and gender equity in water management and research.
From 2016 until 2023, she was the senior editor of Fanack Water, an online media platform covering water and climate issues in the 21 countries of the Middle East and North Africa Region.