Mary Ollenburger

Mary OllenburgerMy PhD research in southern Mali studies how pathways of farming systems change interact with institutional and land use change, and what that means for farmer livelihoods and larger-scale food security and economic growth. I use a variety of quantitative and qualitative methods, from crop trial data to remote sensing, participatory modeling and scenario visioning, to explore options for sustainable rural development with farmers and other stakeholders. I am in the final stages of my PhD in Ken Giller’s Plant Production Systems Group at Wageningen University, and over three years working with ICRISAT in Mali I managed on-farm trials and conducted participatory biophysical and economic analysis with farmers as part of the AfricaRISING project of USAID. My MSc research with Dr. Sieg Snapp used the crop simulation model APSIM to study the effects of climate variability and climate change on maize-pigeonpea systems in Malawi.