Huub Droogh – Dutch urban planner. Urban management lecturer.
Specialist in the field of urban planning and sustainable development of cities and regions. After a career at the Dutch Ministry of Economic development since 1993 connected with Rothuizen Architecten Stedenbouwkundigen. During the period 2008–2012 he combined the role of managing partner establishing RDH Architekci Urbaniści in Poznań (Poland). Since 2013 his professional life mainly focuses on Poland.
What is the most important for you in teaching? How do you work with students? What would you like to teach them, what to share with them?
Most important for me is to share my experience with my students. As Dutch urbanist and spatial planner I practiced the first years of my career at the Dutch ministry of economic development, in the field of regional economic development. Working at the National level is interesting, but a bit abstract. Later I started to work at RDH/Rothuizen Architecten Stedenbouwkundigen. Here my work became more practical. I was (and still am) involved in a substantial amount of projects related to (regional) urban development, city master planning, urban design and urban consultancy. I am practicing these projects in the Netherlands as well in Poland and Lithuania.
If you want to work with cities, theoretical knowledge is of course an important asset. But more important is to understand the city itself: to feel its history, its successes, failures, scarfs and potential. Cities are made by people. They give content to spatial, economic and social activities. Cities are like living organism. To understand the city, you should understand people’s drive and motivation.
Nowadays the (inter)national social economic context has significant influence on the development of cities. Students of Urban Management should have the ability to get overview what is going on in the world, and able to explain complex processes in understandable language to local politicians.
I like to make complex issues simple, down to earth. The advantage of having a lot of experience is to have overview. I like to use this overview to help students developing the practical skills to understand cities and its processes.
What is most interesting for you in life and at work?
For me everything in life is connected: private and business, past and future, functionality and esthetics. Life is holistic, and I try to live it like that. I read a lot about history, about politics and new developments. I travel a lot for business as well private. I try to do it with open mind: observing, thinking, asking…Avoiding judgment as much as possible. It makes life interesting when you discover connections between current times and the past, between art and economy, between young and old.
What inspires you?
People and their ability to surprise you every day again…
What is your life’s sense? What is the reason that makes you get up in the morning?
Curiosity what the new day will bring this time…
What are your goals, what do you dream about (not only in professional life)?
In fact I am fulfilling every day a part of my dream. Working for and with society is the most inspirering for me. Monitoring progress of change, bringing understanding between people and creating concrete solutions helping people to improve their life conditions is very satisfying. I am looking forward to share this experience with young people who are choosing to step into the fascinating world of urban management!