Michiel Hootsmans is a senior researcher in aquatic ecology. In this position, he is in charge of the development, broadening and deepening of a new ecological research niche in the detection and monitoring of aquatic biodiversity. To promote the development of effective and efficient water quality management, he acquired two important TKI projects and reached a collaborative agreement with Naturalis. He works with various partners to combine information on biodiversity and type-specific ecological requirements. He also contributes to the application of environmental DNA methods by describing fish migration. Partly as a result of his previous work in various management positions, Michiel is a strategic manager and adviser on water management and ecology, in which he combines a solid research background with extensive managerial experience in the public water sector. Michiel focuses on quality and results, is assertive, and enjoys supporting his team members from a coaching role in the development of their own independence and professionalism. He is eager to learn and is able to quickly become familiar with new fields of knowledge. Michiel is happy to share knowledge with others and does so with great cogency.