Karin Nijenhuis

Karin Nijenhuis works as a Knowledge Manager at the Secretariat for the Knowledge Platform on Development Policies, one of the five Knowledge Platforms that have been set up by the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs to make development policies more knowledge- and evidence-based. In the Knowledge Platform on Development Policies, researchers from the Netherlands and African developing countries work together with the private sector, NGOs and government. The key theme is how to make growth and development in Africa more inclusive with a specific focus on productive employment, social protection and the role of strategic actors for inclusive development. The Secretariat is hosted by the ASC, ISS, AERC and The Broker (see www.knowledgeplatforms.nl).

Karin Nijenhuis studied law (University of Groningen) and human geography (University of Amsterdam) and holds a PhD in rural development studies from Wageningen University. Her PhD research was on the mobility of farmers in relation to access to land and conflict in Mali. This political-ecological study highlights the crucial role of farming conditions, which vary in specific regional settings, on farmers’ mobility and, in doing so, on local political processes (including conflict) that mediate farmers’ access to land. Her dissertation was based on extensive fieldwork among the Dogon, Fulani and Minyanka in Central and South Mali between 1999 and 2002. It can be downloaded here or ordered from our webshop.

Karin has broad experience in research, teaching and (senior) project management. She started as a socio-legal researcher on environmental issues at the VU University Amsterdam and the University of Amsterdam, where she was also involved in courses on environmental law for non-lawyers and she provided workshops at Beninese and Malian universities. Next, she worked as a policy officer at WOTRO Science for Global Development. Later on, she also gained extensive experience in managing large projects in West and East Africa for international development organizations, including Oxfam Novib and the Center for International Legal Cooperation (CILC). At CILC, which aims at enhancing the rule of law, she led programmes to enhance training institutes for legal professionals in Rwanda and Uganda and she also conducted short-term research consultancies to herder-farmer conflict in Sierra Leone and the performance of the Judiciary in Uganda. Most recently, Karin developed and taught courses on Law and Governance in Africa at Leiden University College The Hague and Leiden Law School (Van Vollenhoven Institute).

Fellow member
African Studies Centre
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