Jacqueline Vel is a senior researcher at the Van Vollenhoven Institute of Leiden Law School on the theme of law, governance and development in Indonesia. Her current research concentrates on village governance in Indonesia. With the 2014 Village Law, village governments will enjoy more autonomy and receive a large budget from the central government. How will this new wave of decentralization take place and what will be its effect on villagers in one of the poorest areas of the country?
Jacqueline obtained an MSc in agricultural economics at Wageningen University (1983); she worked as a development worker and researcher on Sumba (Indonesia) from 1984-1990. She obtained a PhD (1994) in Wageningen, agricultural law department, on a dissertation entitled "The Uma-economy: indigenous economics and development work in Lawonda, Sumba (eastern Indonesia)", Indonesian translation in 2010. Furthermore, she worked as a Policy advisor at ICCO’s South Asia desk (’95-’96); as an assistant professor in Development Sociology and Modern Asian History at the University of Amsterdam, and as coordinator of Asian studies in Amsterdam (’97-2006).
Jacqueline joined the VVI in 2006 as a researcher, working in several Netherlands-Indonesia research programs on changes in land tenure security, access to justice for the poor, and social and legal developments around “Jarak: the commoditization of an alternative biofuel crop (jatropha curcas) in Indonesia.” See results at http://jarak.iias.asia. Sumba Island has been Jacqueline’s continuous field work site, from 1984 until now.