I am trained as an agronomist at Wageningen University and have always worked in interdisciplinary teams with a focus on the system level. My main interest is the relation between agriculture and its environment at the farm level or above. I worked at the Centre for Agro-Biological and Soil Fertility Research (AB-DLO) for 13 years on developing and applying methodologies on exploring production potentials under conflicting goals. I obtained a PhD in exploring opportunities for Dutch dairy systems considering trade-offs between economic and environmental goals with a focus on nutrient emissions. Subsequently, I worked three year at the Centre of Environmental Sciences – Leiden University on certification of farms in relation to environmental and biodiversity issues, both in research and education.
After that I returned to Wageningen in 2000, but now at the Plant Production Systems Group of the University. Here I have worked on a wide variety of subjects, such as mixed farming in the Netherlands, multi-functional agriculture, inter-sector cooperation in organic agriculture, exploring opportunities for biofuel production both in Europe and in Africa, sustainability indicators, development options for homegarden systems in Ethiopia and a developing the existing approach in crop production ecology for livestock production. The red line in my work is systems analysis/research and sustainability. My teaching focusses on natural resource management, systems analysis and the principles of production ecology. Recently, I have developed a MOOC on the latter subject.