Work method

Research, knowledge and advise, offering solutions that will impact everyday practice!

Strengthening natural systems

For some 45 years now, we have been developing knowledge on sustainable agriculture, nutrition and health; in our vision, these three are interrelated. Our focus is on the six themes that are explained here. We are always working on strengthening natural systems and processes, irrespective of the theme, whether this concerns an agricultural area, a type of soil, a company, an organisation, a patient or a city district. We do so in a participative manner, together with those involved and aimed at practical and applicable results. In this way, we are contributing to health and vitality, a resilient food system, and a climate-proof and sustainable physical environment for both people and nature.

figure nutrient cycles in agriculture
                                                                Nutrient cycles in agriculture

Clients of practice-based solutions

Major clients include the Dutch Ministry of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality, ZonMw, the European Commission, provinces, municipalities, water boards, environmental and nature organisations, foundations and, of course, the business community. They value our integral vision on sustainable agriculture, nutrition and health and our ability to offer solutions through a systems approach.
Moreover, we work closely with practitioners and, in addition to traditional research methods, we can also conduct practice-based and implementation research. As a result, our knowledge and advice are practical and highly applicable, and lead to sustainable and healthy growth for people, animals, plants and soils, and the organisations that work towards that goal every day.

Integrated and scientific approach

figure resilience modelWe look, think and act from the knowledge that processes and elements are interrelated. In this integrated, systems approach, research questions are not addressed in isolation, but always by also taking the entire context into consideration. After all, what use is a partial solution if it does not work within the whole? In collaboration with partners, we develop scientific methods that suit our work method, such as 'real life robustness' for lifestyle processes, assessment studies on the implementation of interventions and long-term experiments.