The Dutch Dialogues were initiated by Waggonner & Ball in collaboration with the Royal Netherlands Embassy and the American Planning Association after Hurricane Katrina. Local and international urban design and water sector experts convened in New Orleans to reimagine how the fundamental qualities of water and the landscape can reshape the way we live in an urban delta. Borrowing 800 years of Dutch experience, the Dialogues proposed to embrace water to make the city safer, healthier, and more desirable.
The Dutch Dialogues catalyzed a water movement in the region. The workshops led directly to the funding and development of the Greater New Orleans Urban Water Plan, which was then incorporated in the City's Resilient Nola master plan, and inspired numerous other projects and organizations in the city. Together, the Dutch Dialogues, Water Plan, and many continuing projects make up Waggonner & Ball's Living with Water initiative to leverage water as an asset in the design of buildings and environments.