Yuca Waarts holds an MSc in Agricultural and Environmental Economics from Wageningen University (2003) after which she worked at an NGO to ensure rural economic development while conserving or enhancing biodiversity. Yuca works at Wageningen University & Research since 2008 as a Senior Researcher for sustainable value chain development.
Yuca’s key topic of research is evaluating the impact of policies, innovations, and interventions on smallholder tree-crop commodity farmer livelihoods, with a special focus on finding ways for all farmers to earn a living income. This includes evaluations including collecting baseline and end line data, but also includes modelling the expected impact of interventions based on existing data and the literature. Interventions studied are landscape programs, service delivery (including for diversification) and price measures amongst others, which she mainly conducts in the cocoa, coffee, and tea sectors. She works together with private sector companies, NGOs, foundations, and governments in Africa, Asia, and Latin America.
Next to conducting research, Yuca values working with partners and team members from all over the world. She delivers high quality research results in accessible reports and brochures as well as through face-to-face discussions, (virtual) seminars and professional and public conferences for the design of effective policies and programmes.