We are very happy to introduce our COUPLED fellow Simon!

Simon Bager (ESR 3), supervised by Eric Lambin, will be working on How can private companies promote sustainable land use through their supply chains, based at the University of Louvain.

Until recently, Simon worked at COWI, a Scandinavian environment and engineering consultancy with offices in Copenhagen as well several places in Scandinavia, Europe, Eastern Africa, North America, the Middle East and East Asia. At COWI, Simon worked with national and international clients on matters related to agriculture, forestry, bioenergy, and land use, mainly concerning the use of land and resources, from a technical, policy, and economic perspective, including through fieldwork and fact-finding missions. During the three and half years that Simon spent at COWI, he had the opportunity to learn, work and research many topics related to land use science and policy, such as climate change mitigation, bioenergy, agriculture and anti-deforestation policies, REDD+ policy design and evaluation, private sector anti-deforestation initiatives, and intended nationally determined contributions (INDCs).

The interdisciplinary approach and the idea of working along with public and private institutions for addressing land use challenges seemed attractive to Simon. After a few years working as a consultant on matters within this sphere, he is motivated to dig deeper into the scientific knowledge surrounding land use challenges and related concepts, such as private sector deforestation initiatives and governance of telecoupled systems. Particularly, the issue of agricultural and forestry supply chains and how private companies can work with these to address deforestation and land use challenges is of particular interest to him.

Simon’s research in COUPLED will be focused on how can private companies can promote sustainable land use through their value chains, with the aim of understanding the challenges and opportunities that exist for various stakeholders at different levels of supply chains in implementing effective sustainability commitments. The objective of his research is to analyse the impact and effectiveness of recent supply chain initiatives for select food commodities within various geographies in addressing the drivers of land use change and forest loss and promoting sustainable production practices and improved value chain governance. Simon’s work focus on the commitments made by companies, the effectiveness of these, challenges, opportunities and technical means for achieving sustainable value chains, and supportive governance mechanisms for these.

Again, a warm welcome to you, Simon! We are looking forward to a successful cooperation in the upcoming years.

You can find more information about Simon’s research project here.

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