Subcase study Wupper

Leader Wupper

Moellenkamp, Sabine, USF, University of Osnabrueck, email: contact[at]

You are very welcome to contact the case study leaders if you are looking for the most recent information on the case study in the Rhine Basin.

The Wupper basin is located in Germany within the Rhine catchment area, the Wupper being a direct tributary to the Rhine. It is located in the German state of North Rhine Westphalia, which is characterised by a high density of population and industry. Since decades, the anthropogenic development of the region has influenced the rivers in their use and appearance. Rivers have been polluted and their flow was changed. Dams were constructed in order to provide the region with drinking water.


The Dhünn near Leverkusen is Part of the Wupper catchment area – the picture shows the river at the fish counting station near Leverkusen (06-09-19)


The lake at the Dhünn Dam provides drinking water for the people in the catchment (06-09-19)

With the amelioration of the water quality during the last years, different fish species have repopulated the catchment and the rivers have also become more attractive for recreational uses, such as fishing and hiking.

The Wupper is mainly managed by a single water authority – the Wupperverband – which also coordinates different water uses in the Wupper basin. Being the main stakeholder in the Wupper basin, the Wupperverband became a co-operation partner of the NeWater project by signing a co-operation treaty with all NeWater partners conducting research in the basin. Being also aligned with the ACER project, the Wupper is a joint case study of both projects.


Project members with members of the cooperation partner at the headquarter of the Wupperverband at Wuppertal (06-09-19)

For further information on the Wupperverband please go to


NeWater activities in the Wupper basin

A main activitiy is the co-organisation of a stakeholder process. It will be related to the sub-catchment of the river Dhünn, a tributary of the Wupper. As a pilot project, the Wupperverband is planning involve water users and further stakeholders into the management and planning of future action in the Dhünn basin.

image image

Two stakeholders in the Dhünn basin: Fish counting station of a fishing cooperation (left); Industrial museum using water power (right) (06-09-19)

The project partners analysing the situation and the diverse stakeholder interests in the area in order to formulate recommendations to the Wupperverband about how to carry out such a participatory process. They will then support the Wupperverband in its implementation. Accoring to current planning, the process will involve “Round table” workshops with representatives of all relevant stakeholder interests. For more information on the participatory process, please refer to

Further activities in the Wupper case study include research on the management style of the Wupperverband that will be comparatively analysed with the management style of the Kromme Rijn – a water board in the Netherlands, also part of the Rhine case study. The research will elaborate on the question of membership of the Wupperverband, its openness for stakeholder participation, the current implementation of the WFD as well as on different legal aspects.




Wupperverband (

Water board responsible for the river management in the catchment area

Team members

Name Institute WP Tasks
Moellenkamp, Sabine USF 1.1 / 1.2 / 1.7  
Pahl-Wostl, Claudia USF    
Ebenhöh, Eva USF    
Rinke, Karina USF    
Brugnach, Marcela USF    
Isendahl, Nicola USF    
Dewulf, Art COPP    
François, Greet COPP 1.1/1.7/4.3  
Taillieu, Tharsi COPP    
vanderBrugge, Rutger DRIFT (ICIS)    
Raak, Roel van DRIFT (ICIS)    
Lamers, Machiel ICIS    
Stel, Jan ICIS    
Aerts, Jeroen IVM    
Becker, Gert IVM    
Hare, Matt Seecon    
Speil, Karina Seecon    
Schmidt, Thorben USF    
Huesmann, Christian USF    
Pohl, Wiebke USF