Barbara van Mierlo

portrait of Barbara van Mierlo

Affiliated lecturer Transition Academy
Expertise: Reflexive monitoring
Barbara van Mierlo is Associate Professor (with ius promovendi) at the group of Knowledge, Technology and Innovation of Wageningen University and Research.
She studies processes of transformative, systemic change towards sustainability and its intersection with everyday social practices. Being actively engaged in these processes as an action researcher, her special interests include the significance and features of interactive learning and discursive strategies, the value of change-oriented evaluation, emergence of reflexivity, responsible research and innovation (RRI), and transdisciplinary collaboration. She has developed the methodology of Reflexive Monitoring in Action (RMA) for supporting system innovation initiatives to keep their ambition high. The methodology has a wide international uptake in areas such as sustainable agriculture, natural resource management, renewable energy and health.
After studying sociology in Amsterdam, Barbara worked at IVAM Environmental Research, a company affiliated with the University of Amsterdam, as senior researcher Energy and head of the department Quality of Living. Following her PhD on niche development of photovoltaic pilot projects in housing, she made the move to Wageningen University to become a lecturer and researcher in innovation and communication studies. She has coordinated several large projects like Monitoring and Evaluation of Networks (Ministry of Agriculture) and Network Interventions by Private Partners for Responsible Innovation (NWO), and has supervised PhD-candidates in the area of interactive learning and transitions. Her current studies focus on the empirical domains of sustainable agricultural production, client-oriented healthcare, renewable energy (solar parks), and ‘the’ protein transition.
She publishes about her – collaborative – work in journals such as Environmental Innovation and Societal Transitions, Evaluation, Agricultural Systems and the Journal of Responsible Innovation. See this overview.