Dr Ben van den Akker


Adjunct senior lecturer at Flinders University

Lead  Scientist, Environment and Wastewater, SA Water


Dr Ben van den Akker has pursued a hybrid research career within both academia and industry. Currently, Ben is a Lead  Research Scientist in Environment and Wastewater at SA Water where he conducts multidisciplinary research that focuses on improving the performance and stainability of wastewater treatment and water reclamation. Prior to this appointment, Ben worked at the University of New South Wales as a Senior Research Associate where he worked closely with the water industry to apply quantitative microbial risk assessment techniques for the management of water quality and public health. Ben has a gained bachelor’s degree in Environmental Health, a first class honour’s degree in Science and a PhD from Flinders University. To date, Ben has published 43 peer-reviewed journal papers and book chapters and has held a number of adjunct positions at universities where he has lectured and supervised higher degree research students

Summary of current research projects

Ben’s core research interest and expertise are centred on meeting the challenges associated with the treatment and reuse of wastewater and stormwater. In particular, Ben’s research focuses on enhancing the environmental performance of wastewater treatment systems by reducing energy requirements and greenhouse gas emissions and maximising energy recovery. Ben’s research also focuses on maximising beneficial reuse of wastewater through the application and uptake of quantitative microbial risk assessment. This includes studying the fate of pathogens through engineered treatment barriers.