I am a behavioural psychologist specialized in behaviour change for nature conservation and sustainability. How did I get involved in the field?
When I was a young boy, the wetlands of my hometown were my playground. I loved to swim, watch birds and fish. One day, my teacher told about our dying rivers. I came home in tears. Since then, I want to protect our planet.
First I planned to become a biologist. But then I realized that if people are the problem, people also have be to be the solution. So I decided to become a psychologist and combine that field with environmental science.
Step by step I started a career in the field. Until ten years ago, I worked on environmental projects with high ambitions but often disappointing impact. Why? Because behaviour change is difficult. Even changing our own behaviour is hard, let alone influencing others.
Facing this reality was tough. I dedicated my life to help protect nature but my efforts were not really effective. So I decided to take up the challenge to find new methods for successful change. This was an adventurous journey. I was fortunate to get support from a great guide and a great mentor: Dr. BJ Fogg who leads the Stanford Behaviour Design Lab and Frits Hesselink, Emeritus Chair of IUCN CEC. They taught me for example how to break down an ambitious goal in doable steps, one of the powerful elements of a good change strategy.
My current focus is on developing communication strategies, policies and action plans for my clients, using the field-tested methods we developed. I empower their teams with trainings and workshops ranging from storytelling to methods for behaviour change. I work for governments & NGOs and work with teams in Africa and Asia for clients like UNDP, IUCN and World Bank.
In my free time, I still love experiencing nature. Swimming in the rivers around Amsterdam is one of my favourite pastimes. And the good news is that the water is finally clean again.
I hold a master degree in Psychology from University Utrecht and a degree om Environmental Management and Policy from the University of Amsterdam, VU University, the University of Leiden and Wageningen University.
More info and contact
For more info, check out my linkedin profile. Feel free to contact me if you want to explore opportunities for collaboration.
1016 BV Amsterdam