The ENRICH project (Research and Education on Environmental Management in China)


China is facing serious environmental problems. The recent rapid economic development has caused air and water pollution, natural resource depletion, and increasing amounts of domestic, industrial and hazardous waste. With one-fifth of the world population and a rapidly expanding economy, China poses a significant threat to the national and global environment. Although the environmental problems are recognized by the central government, efforts to protect the environment and manage natural resources are only gradually catching up with economic and industrial growth.

China has to date mainly relied on technological end-of-pipe measures and a "command-and-control" approach to safeguard environmental quality and natural resources. More advanced knowledge on new environmental governance models and environmental management strategies in an emerging market economy are lacking. In the policy-making and implementing institutions at the national and local levels, the institutional capacity, human resources and experience in advancing sustainable development are weak. Moreover, the growing integration of China in the world economy and polity poses new challenges for China's foreign environmental agenda


The ENRICH project (2001-2004), "Environmental Management in China", aims at strengthening China's knowledge, education capacity and policy institutions on environmental policy and management in a rapidly changing social-economic context. The project brings together experts from academic institutions in China and the Netherlands, and links to similar experiences, projects and universities in, among others, Thailand, Vietnam and Malaysia. For these purposes, ENRICH has developed a wide range of activities.


The educational component of ENRICH includes the development and implementation of China’s first Master’s degree in environmental policy and management at one of the country’s leading academic institutions: the Qinghua University. In addition, new courses are developed and given at the Bachelor’s level, while short training courses are provided for professionals in the state bureaucracy.


Research focuses on cleaner production for small and medium-size (rural) enterprises; ecological industrial park management; environmental infrastructure management for cities and small townships; coastal zone management; and air pollution control policy. The research by senior academic staff and PhD candidates will be concentrated in Chongqing municipality and Hainan island.


The institutional strengthening of ENRICH caters to the hard and software of the Chinese counterparts. A total of five PhD candidates and eleven MSc students will obtain their degree in environmental policy and management from academic institutions in The Netherlands. ENRICH selects those promising and young people who are either working in the environmental field, or who explicitly intend to retain a position in an environmental institution. In this way, the project supports the education of future officials and the reinforcement of organizations. Apart from the "software", ENRICH funds the acquisition of advanced technological equipment and the strengthening of libraries and teaching facilities.


Last but not least, ENRICH stimulates internationalization and academic exchange by extending fellowships to outstanding scholars, the facilitation of foreign experts visiting China, and the hosting of two international conferences in China. Through ERNASIA, the ENRICH project assists in the active dissemination of education and research material and experiences, via publications, internet and conferences.


Arthur Mol (Project Director) and Peter Ho (Program Officer)
Wageningen University, Social Sciences, Environmental Policy Group
Hollandseweg 1, 6706 KN, Wageningen, The Netherlands
tel. +31-317-484452/fax +31-317-483990
and website:

Chen Jining (Project Manager) and Zhang Tianzhu
Qinghua University, Department of Environmental Science and Engineering
Beijing, 100084, China, tel. +86-10-62772045/fax +31-86-10-62785687

Wang Rusong and Ouyang Zhiyun, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Research Center for Eco-Environmental Sciences (RCEES), Beijing, 100080, China, tel. +86-10-62521032/fax +86-10-62555127, e-mail: and

Shi Han, Centre for Environmentally Friendly Sound Technology Transfer (CESTT), 109 Wanquanhe Road, Haidian District, Beijing 100089, China, tel. +86-10-82636607/fax +86-10-82636017, e-mail:

Paul Schoonackers and Marjan Kreijns, International Institute for Aerospace Survey and Earth Sciences (ITC), P.O. Box 6, 7500 AA, Enschede, The Netherlands, tel. +31-53-4874444/fax +31-53-4874400, e-mail: and

Ogenis Brilhante, Institute for Housing and Urban Development Studies (IHS), P.O. Box 1935, 3000 BX, Rotterdam, The Netherlands, tel. +31-10-4021523/fax +31-10-4045671, e-mail: