Sonja Vermeulen

Head of Research
Coordinating Unit
As CCAFS Head of Research, Sonja Vermeulen helps the team to produce research outputs that synthesise across the Flagships and regions, and to engage with policy processes and partners, particularly at the global level.
Prior to her position at CCAFS, Dr Vermeulen served as Director of the Programme on Business and Sustainable Development at the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED). Earlier in her career she worked in research with the University of Zimbabwe, the World Wide Fund for Nature and the Center for International Forestry Research. Dr Vermeulen’s work has spanned the natural and social sciences, across the fields of forestry, agriculture and natural resource management. Her career has bridged academic and applied research, with a strong focus on linking science with public policy and private sector strategies, particularly in Africa and Asia.
Dr Vermeulen holds an MA in Natural Sciences from the University of Cambridge, an MSc in Tropical Resource Ecology from the University of Zimbabwe and a PhD in Population Biology from Imperial College London. 

Some recent publications

Negra, C., Vermeulen, S. Barioni, L.G., Mamo, T. Melville, P. and Tadesse, M. 2014. Brazil, Ethiopia, and New Zealand lead the way on climate-smart agriculture.Agriculture & Food Security 19. doi:10.1186/s40066-014-0019-8

Wright, H., Vermeulen, S., Laganda, G., Olupot, M., Ampaire, E. and Jat, M.L. 2014. Finance, farmers and food: ensuring that mainstreamed climate change adaptation is community-based. Climate Change & Development 6: 318–328.

Sova, C.A., Helfgott, A., Chaudhury, A.S., Matthews, D., Thornton, T.F. and Vermeulen, S.J. 2014. Multi-level stakeholder influence mapping: visualizing power relations across actor levels in Nepal’s agricultural climate change adaptation regime. Systemic Practice & Action Research. 10.1007/s11213-014-9335-y

Steenwerth, K.L., Hodson, A.K., Bloom, A.J., Carter, M.R., Cattaneo, A., Chartres, C.J., Hatfield, J.L., Henry, K., Hopmans, J.W. Horwath, W.R., Jenkins, B.M., Kebreab, E., Leemans, R., Lipper, L., Lubell, M.N., Msangi, S., Prabhu, R., Reynolds, M.P., Sandoval Solis, S., Sischo, W.M., Springborn, M., Tittonell, P., Vermeulen, S.J., Wheeler, S.M., Wollenberg, E.K., Jarvis, L.S. and Jackson, L.E. 2014. Climate-smart agriculture global research agenda: scientific basis for action. Agriculture & Food Security 3:11.

Neufeldt, H., Jahn, M., Campbell, B., Beddngton, J.R., de Clerck, F., de Pinto, A., Gulledge, J., Hellin, J., Herrero, M., Jarvis, A., LeZaks, D., Meinke, H., Rosenstock, T., Scholes, M., Scholes, R., Vermeulen, S., Wollenberg, E. and Zougmoré, R. 2013. Beyond climate-smart agriculture: toward safe operating spaces for global food systems. Agriculture & Food Security 2:12 doi:10.1186/2048-7010-2-12

Garnett, T., Appleby, M.C., Blamford, A., Bateman, I.J., Benton, T.G., Bloomer, P., Burlingame, B., Dawkins, M., Dolan, L., Fraser, D., Herrero, M., Hoffmann, I., Smith, P., Thornton, P.K., Toulmin, C., Vermeulen, S.J. and Godfray, C.J. 2013. Sustainable intensification in agriculture: premises and policies. Science 341: 33-34.

Vermeulen, S.J., Challinor, A.J., Thornton, P.K., Campbell, B.M., Eriyagama, N., Vervoort, J., Kinyangi, J., Jarvis, A., Läderach, P., Ramirez-Villegas, J., Nicklin, K., Hawkins, E., and Smith, D.R. 2013. Addressing uncertainty in adaptation planning for agriculture. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 110: 8357–8362.

Vermeulen, S.J., Campbell, B.M. and Ingram, J.S.I. 2012. Climate change and food systems. Annual Review of Environment and Resources 37: 195-222.

Vermeulen, S., Zougmoré, R., Wollenberg, E., Thornton, P., Nelson, G., Kristjanson, P., Kinyangi, J., Jarvis, A., Hansen, J., Challinor, A., Campbell, B., Aggarwal, P. 2012.

Climate change, agriculture and food security: a global partnership to link research and action for low-income agricultural producers and consumers. Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability. 4: 128–133.

Vermeulen, S.J., Aggarwal, P.K., Ainslie, A., Angelone, C., Campbell, B.M. Challinor, A.J., Hansen, J.W., Ingram, J.S.I., Jarvis, A., Kristjanson, P., Lau, C., Nelson, G.C., Thornton, P.K. and Wollenberg, E. 2012. Options for support to agriculture and food security under climate change. Environmental Science and Policy 15: 136-144.

Cotula, L., Vermeulen, S., Mathieu, P. and Toulmin, C. 2011. Agricultural investment and international land deals: evidence from a multi-country study in Africa. Food Security 3: 99-113.

Cotula, L. and Vermeulen, S. 2011. Contexts and procedures for farmland acquisitions in Africa: what outcomes for local people? Development 54: 40-48.

Vermeulen, S. and Cotula, L. 2010. Over the heads of local people: consultation, consent, and recompense in large-scale land deals for biofuels projects in Africa. Journal of Peasant Studies 37: 899–916.

Cotula, L. and Vermeulen, S. 2009. Deal or no deal: the outlook for agricultural land investment in Africa. International Affairs 85: 1233-1247.

Vermeulen, S., Nawir, A.A. and Mayers, J. 2008. Rural poverty reduction through business partnerships? Examples of experience from the forestry sector. Environment, Development and Sustainability 10: 1-18.

Vermeulen, S.  and Sheil, D. 2007. Partnerships for tropical conservation. Oryx. 41: 434-440.