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Expert meeting for Biesbosch and Land van Heusden en Altena

​Setting the scene

The area of Biesbosch and Land van Heusden en Altena is part of the field of the Gebiedscommissie Wijde Biesbosch. In this joint committee various organisations collaborate on the improvement of the social and economic vitality, and the quality of the living environment. In cooperation with the municipalities the committee seeks future economic drivers and sees leisure as an attractive option. In a one-day expert meeting current developments and initiatives were discussed, to explore opportunities.


Although leisure (or: tourism and recreation) is a main issue in several reports about the region, the purpose for the expert meeting was to look broader and find coherence. Especially, the meeting was meant to orientate on vistas for the long-term. Four questions were at the center.vraagstelling

What opportunties for development does leisure offer the area?

Which other chances for economic enhancement could come forth from current  or new developments?

What are the critical success and failure factors, that determine the feasibilty of new chances?

Which scenarios can be thought of, based on the most uncertain and the most influential factors?

Mode of operation

We conducted the expert meeting - on behalf of Stichting Regiowaarde - in collaboration with Telos, part of the Tilburg University. Several experts from different organisations, capable of thinking outside the box, were invited. With a summary of the current developments beforehand, new input from practitioners on specific topics during the meeting and some visits to entrepreneurs, the expert team made its analysis. At the end of the day the findings were presented to local governors from the region.

Scenario planning as a tool

scenariosIt turned out that local organisations do not yet have a good picture of the future possibilities and the consequences of choices to be made. To get more insight, we advised to elaborate some alternatives with scenario planning. With the outcomes of the expert meeting we made a first step by describing four fictional, yet realistic scenario's. That illustrates the advise for scenario planning, makes it more concrete and already gives something to discuss.

More information
Condensed report of the expert meeting: Preserving qualities requires choice making
On the website of the Gebiedscommissie: journalist's report of the meeting (in Dutch). Scroll to Expert meeting

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