The main goal of the Young Expert Programmes (YEP), consisting of YEP Water, YEP Agrofood, YEP Energy and YEP Tailor-made, is to offer young Dutch and local professionals the opportunity to take their first steps in an international environment. They are employed through Dutch organisations in a number of eligible countries. The programmes aim to rejuvenate the water, agrofood and renewable energy sectors and ensure the continued availability of expertise for these sectors.

The YEP Programmes are carried out jointly by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Netherlands Water Partnership (NWP), the Food & Business Knowledge Platform and the Netherlands Enterprise Agency.


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New edition of YEP Effect: no. 6!

We are proud to present the 6th edition of YEP Effect!

Preparatory training course

Training of the 21st batch starts on 21 September

Organisations: deadline project submission

Deadline for submitting project proposals by organisations (batch 22):

11 October 2020

Candidates: apply for YEP positions

New YEP positions will be available on 28 October
Every year we subsidise the placement of 72 young professionals
Check the latest results of YEP in our annual report

Click here for an overview of all YEP projects at Akvo RSR

Anniek Elemans

Where is she now? Agribusiness advisor, Resilience Ethiopia

Young Expert at Alterra - Ethiopia

YEP period 2015 - 2017, batch 5

YEP Role

I worked as a junior researcher at Alterra, a knowledge institute in the field of green living environment. Alterra  performs research across many disciplines targeted at food security, green climate solutions, green economic growth and green cities. In Ethiopia I was working on developing climate smart land and water management options for smallholder farmers in order to sustainably increase their agricultural production.
Click here for more information about my project.



In the course of my studies I have become passionate about sustainable agriculture and supply chains. During my fieldwork abroad and my internship at The Sustainability Consortium I came to realize that taking an systems approach is essential in effectively addressing sustainability issues. Therefore I am eager to further develop these skills and knowledge during my work on climate smart agriculture in Ethiopia.

In addition, I would describe myself as an open, integer, and independent person who likes to get to know new people and to find out what motivates them in life. I enjoy working in a team and looking at how the various qualities of the team members can complement each other in attaining our goals.



Nationality: Dutch

  • Climate-KIC Master Program (2014)
  • Master Climate Studies, specialization in Environmental Systems Analysis (Wageningen University, 2015)
  • Bachelor International Land and Water Management (Wageningen University, 2012)

Experience before YEP

  • Mar-June 2015: Teaching assistant at a Bachelor course on international land and water management focused on the Rau River Basin in Northern Tanzania.
  • Oct 2014-Feb 2015: Master internship at The Sustainability Consortium. The Sustainability Consortium is a global organization dedicated to improving the sustainability of consumer products. Members are manufacturers, retailers, service providers, NGOs, civil society organizations, governmental agencies and academics. I worked on a sustainability performance assessment of agricultural products on a supply chain level in a pilot with the Dutch retailer Ahold.
  • Nov 2013-Sept 2014: Master thesis at the CGIAR World Potato Institute in Peru on the vulnerability of farming systems in the Andes to climate change. The thesis consisted of several weeks of fieldwork during which I visited and interviewed some 70 farmers and organizations about how they deal with the changing climate.
  • Sept 2012-Nov 2014: Climate KIC MSc program of the European Institute for Technology, including a summer school on climate change, innovation and entrepreneurship.
  • Feb-May 2011: Research internship at the Green Water Credits Program in Kenya. Green Water Credits is a type of Payments for Environmental Services whereby upstream farmers are compensated for their investments in soil and water conservation by downstream beneficiaries. During this internship I evaluated the roles of several governmental and non-governmental organizations and companies in the integrated land and water management of the Upper Tana Basin in Kenya.
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Monday, April 3, 2017
Preparing for the rainy season
The CASCAPE project in which I am involved is working together with the Ethiopian government to scale up agricultural best-fit practices - agricultural practices which have proven to be successful in more

Farmers discussing the performance of their improved malt barley varieties

Tuesday, October 4, 2016
Business models for compost
Last month, the Fertile Grounds Initiative (one of the projects I am working on) in collaboration with the Food and Business Knowledge Platform organized a regional workshop in Nairobi. The workshop more

Business model canvas by one of the participant groups

Tuesday, June 7, 2016
Spices from Ethiopia
As the world population and middle class are growing, the demand for spices is growing along, resulting in increasing prices of various spices. Spice cultivation in southwest Ethiopia has a large more

Black pepper experimental site in Tepi, Ethiopia