Newsletter No 1 March 2011

VU University set to launch Amsterdam Global Change Institute


agci1The Amsterdam Global Change Institute (AGCI) will be officially launched at the VU University on 16th June 2011. The new institute aims to encourage excellence and innovation in research on the environment, global change and sustainability

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The lesson of Easter Island


easter islandIn my book, Beelden van Paaseiland Over de duurzaamheid van een cultuur (Statues of Easter Island On the sustainability of a culture), to be published by Atlas in mid-April, I reconstruct the ecological and cultural history of this fascinating island. In doing so, I dispute the commonly-held views of the kind found in environmental science literature

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Spatial effects in stated preference studies for environmental valuation


scheldeOn the 26th of January 2011 Marije Schaafsma defended her PhD entitled “Spatial effects in stated preference studies for environmental valuation”. The main research question was if the reliability and validity of Stated Preference studies would improve by controlling for spatial effects, including substitution and distance effects, in the design and analysis of valuation studies. A recently published paper in H2O led to a few days of commotion in the days before the defence.

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Tools for understanding and discussing future development options: Mapping, modeling and visualizing European rural dynamics.


spaceThe Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) is a highly influential policy mechanism in rural areas of the EU constituting nearly half of the EU budget (55 billion). In the Netherlands alone approximately 950 million Euros are directed to farming businesses annually, complementing the majority of farmer incomes, and making rural livelihoods interdependent with the CAP. 

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The Moerdijk Fire: one week of intensive press contacts


moerdijkThe fire in the chemical warehouse of ChemiePack in Moerdijk caused a lot of contacts between me, on behalf of IVM, and newspapers, radio and television. There was a clear need for understandable information on the possible consequences of this fire and, because toxic compounds and their combustion products were involved, IVM was approached for this task.

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