Wageningen University & Research: WUR and SNV want to create more impact on sustainable development goals

Wageningen University & Research and SNV Netherlands Development Organisation will be signing a Memorandum of Understanding to enhance future collaboration. The collaboration is intended to facilitate and create more impact on the UN Sustainable Development Goals – important universal calls to action to end poverty and protect the planet.

Both SNV and WUR work on large-scale projects with partners in the Global South, aimed at tackling pressing issues such as food insecurity, biodiversity loss and climate change. The organisations work from complementary perspectives: WUR focuses on knowledge, technology development and action research for evidence, and SNV is a strong implementing partner with a long-standing presence in developing countries, strong relationships and technical assistance expertise. Building on these complementary advantages and strengths, WUR and SNV will pool their capacities to establish a more sustainable collaboration.

Renewed collaboration
Collaboration between SNV and WUR is not new. Over the past few years it has taken place in many different projects. For instance, the ten-year Pro-ARIDES project that was started in 2021 is a collaboration between SNV, WUR and a wide range of local partners in the Sahel region. This project will contribute to increased resilience, food security and household incomes for farmers and (agro) pastoralists in the Sudano-Sahelian zone of Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger.

Markt in Kenia
COVID-19 crisis
Another example is the collaboration that took place during the start of the COVID-19 crisis. WUR and SNV worked together with local partners, to execute rapid assessments that provided a quick insight into the effects of COVID-19 measures on agricultural sectors. For instance, lockdowns were posing a serious threats to seed markets that are vital to ensure quality seed is used during the planting seasons in Africa. By rapidly flagging such issues and collaborating with local partners that were in a position to act, detrimental effects of lockdowns on agricultural yields were prevented. In a more sector-focused project – the BRIDGE project– with partners in the Ethiopian dairy sector, SNV and WUR have collaborated on dairy development to build rural household income.

Shared view on local impact
‘We are delighted to announce the formalisation of our long-standing relationship,’ says Louise O. Fresco, President of the Executive Board of Wageningen University & Research. “Our organisations share the view that local impact and sustainable development are bottom-up processes, which depend on strong collaborations with our global partners in Africa, Latin America and Asia. Jointly, we hope to be able to support people who live in poverty through knowledge sharing, innovation, local presence and practical know-how.”

Our organisations share the view that local impact and sustainable development are bottom-up processes
Louise O. Fresco, president Executive Board of Wageningen University & Research
‘At a time of considerable global turmoil and complexity, with the COVID-19 pandemic pushing more people into poverty and setting back progress towards the SDGs, SNV Netherlands Development Organisation is delighted to deepen our longstanding relationship with Wageningen University & Research,’ adds Simon O’Connell, SNV’s Chief Executive Officer. ‘It represents an important opportunity for both our organisations to scale up the impact of our sustainable development-orientated interventions, with local partners. Our contextual knowledge, relationships and practical expertise, and WUR’s academic rigor, research capacities and global influence, entwined in a more strategic, longer-term partnership will enable us to contribute to more lasting, systemic change.’

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