Michiel van den Bergh

Michiel van den Bergh (1983) conducted PhD research for Vogelbescherming Nederland (VBN; BirdLife International’s national partner in the Netherlands) at Leiden University.

VBN has launched a new project called ‘Living on the edge’. It is an ambitious initiative to improve living conditions in the Sahel for birds and people, by working with the local population to conserve and restore the natural environment, and enhance livelihoods through a more sustainable use of natural resources. The PhD is part of the project and will be linking development and conservation in the Sahelian drylands. The research includes fieldwork in Burkina Faso. The research goal has been divided into four themes/papers:

a) Decentralization, participation, empowerment, and the (dis)functioning of community groups in integrated biodiversity conservation and livelihood improvement efforts: local perspectives from the Sahel region.

b) Socio-economic and socio-cultural aspects of land use and conservation: local perspectives from the Sahel region.

c) Institutional arrangement of land use and conservation in Burkina Faso(’s Sahel region): structures, processes and actors.

d) Key drivers of land use and habitat changes in the Sahel.

Michiel began his PhD in April 2011, supervised by Prof. Ton Dietz, Dr Dick Foeken, Bernd de Bruijn (VBN), and Huub Hendrix (ASC & VBN). Prior to his PhD research, he studied Human Geography at the University of Amsterdam and obtained a Masters degree in Developmental and Environmental Geography. In 2006, Michiel successfully completed five courses in Environmental Management and Human Development at the Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo, Canada. Additionally in 2011, he completed the Ceres Basic Training Course and a Practical Course on the Methodology of Fieldwork at Utrecht University/CERES Research School for Resource Studies for Development.

On 23 November 2016, Michiel van den Bergh succesfully defended his dissertation at Leiden University.

Fellow member
African Studies Centre
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