Denyse Snelder

Snelder, Denyse
+31 20 59 89080
[email protected]
student- & onderwijszaken ( international office )
Senior Advisor Natural Resources Management/Project Manager International Cooperation Projects

Key qualifications/ field of expertise

  • Sustainable land and water management
  • Food security
  • Biodiversity conservation
  • Agroforestry
  • Curriculum review and development
  • Preparatory doctoral training including proposal writing

Summary of work experience

Denyse J. Snelder obtained her PhD in 1993 at the University of Toronto, Canada, based on research directed at vegetative control of soil erosion in the semi-arid Baringo District, Kenya. Up to December 2012, she had a dual position, one as senior specialist Sustainable Land and Water Management at the Centre for International Cooperation, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, and another as an associate professor at the Institute of Environmental Sciences Leiden (CML), Leiden University, The Netherlands. Since January 2013 she holds a full-time position at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam as senior advisor and director of various research and capacity building projects, such as, spatial planning for agribusiness and public policy development in Greater Western Kenya (SPADE funded by NUFFIC; 2017 - 2021); natural resource management and conflict resolution for stability and inclusive growth in the Greater Virunga Landscape (3C project funded by NUFFIC; 2017-2021); a sustainable approach to livelihood improvement in Kenya (ASALI funded through a legacy by VU Amsterdam; 2014 – present); capacity building for Higher Education Institutes in natural resource management, tourism, and ecotourism in Ethiopia (STRONGBOW funded by NUFFIC; 2011-2017); water harvesting technologies in Sub Saharan Africa (WHaTeR funded by EU-FP7; 2011-2015). Before 2009, Dr Snelder was the coordinator and later head of the Cagayan Valley Program on Environment and Development (CVPED), the joint research and education program of the Leiden University and the  Isabela  State  University (Philippines). Dr Snelder has conducted extensive research in the Philippines, and, over the past years, extended her activities through projects in Sub Saharan Africa. She further contributes to various courses and training in the field of food and water security, sustainable land and water management, research design and proposal writing, and curriculum review and development.


Rwanda, DR Congo and Uganda



  • Capacity Building for HEIs in Natural Resource Management, Tourism and Eco‐tourism (STRONGBOW) in Ethiopia

Sub-Saharan Africa

  • Water harvesting technologies in Sub-Saharan Africa (WhaTeR) 


  • Supervision of various PhD research projects 


Honours course on International Development

Amsterdam Summer School course on Feeding the Billions: Challenges and Innovation in Food and Water Security

Preparatory doctoral training in bridging program and within the framework of projects


View Denyse Snelder's publications at VU Research Portal.