I am an Assistant Professor of Organization Sciences (tenured) at the VU University Amsterdam, Faculty of Social Sciences. In my research I focus on how informal networks emerge and enable bottom-up forms of collaboration. In particular, I study how such networks engender participation (or exclusion), how heterogeneous stakeholders in informal networks negotiate their interests, and how this affects knowledge sharing.

photo StudioVU/Richelle vd Valk

This research focus is manifested in a variety of different contexts, aimed toward social innovation of (ICT-enabled) development cooperation, emergency and disaster management, health, sustainable trade (incl. corporate social responsibility), and finance. Please see my projects for more details, my publications for an overview of published or forthcoming research outcomes, or a short movie profile of my research interests and motives.

I have a PhD in Economics and Business Administration (dissertation "Perspectives on aid: Accommodating heterogeneity in knowledge management for development"), an MA in Philosophy (cum laude, University of Amsterdam), and an MA in Comparative Literature (University of Amsterdam and University of California, Los Angeles). I spent one year at the Universit√© de Bourgogne, Dijon. I also have my certificate for Teaching in Higher Education (BKO, basiskwalificatie onderwijs). Prior to academia, I worked as program officer/manager at international development institutes Hivos and IICD, and before that as ICT Consultant at different start-ups.

Outside of work, I love to practice yoga and am a certified yin yoga instructor (completed under the private tutelage of Inge Langereis) at studio Yoga Amstelveen. I also enjoying playing the piano, reading (literature), attending the opera, and most of all: doing fun stuff with my kids. If you have research ideas or proposals, or would like to support my research in any way, please do not hesitate to contact me (via julie dot ferguson at vu dot nl)