Martien van Nieuwkoop, a Dutch national, was appointed Global Director for the Agriculture and Food Global Practice in the World Bank’s Sustainable Development Practice Group on July 1, 2019. As Global Director, Martien provides leadership to the formulation and implementation of the Bank’s strategy and knowledge in agriculture and food, oversees the operationalization of the Bank’s vision on agriculture and food in regional and country programs, acts as senior spokesperson for agriculture and food Bank-wide and globally and manages the Agriculture and Food Global Practice. The Agriculture and Food Global Practice has a portfolio of about 160 projects with close to US$ 20 billion in commitments in investment project, program-for-results and development policy lending and about 250 staffs.
Before taking this position, Martien served for two years as Practice Director of the World Bank’s Agriculture Global Practice, where he oversaw the Bank’s agriculture lending, portfolio and analytic work in the East-Asia Pacific, Latin-America and the Caribbean and South Asia Regions, coordinated collaboration with IFC on agribusiness, and led the Bank’s global engagement on agriculture and climate change.
Martien joined the World Bank in 1993 as a Young Professional and worked initially as an agriculture economist in the Latin-America and Caribbean Region. He was cluster leader covering agriculture during field assignments in Madagascar from 2001-2004 and in India from 2005-2007. From 2007 to 2015 Martien worked as Program Coordinator and Sector Manager for Agriculture in various assignments in the Africa Region, including covering Southern and West-Africa. He was also the Practice Manager for Agriculture in the South-Asia Region, a position he held from 2015-2017. Prior to joining the Bank, Martien was an associate scientist in the Economics Program of the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center in Mexico from 1991-1993 and an associate expert in the Dutch bilateral cooperation program in Pakistan from 1989-1991.
Martien holds a Final (“Doctoraal”) Examination (Cum Laude), Development Economics from Wageningen Agricultural University, Wageningen, The Netherlands and an MBA (Beta-Gamma-Sigma), International Executive Program from Georgetown University, Washington, D.C., USA. He grew up on a family-owned horticulture farm in Gouda, The Netherlands.