Photographer: Bram Belloni

dr. H.J.L.M. (Hebe) Verrest

  • Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences
    GPIO : Governance and Inclusive Development
  • Visiting address
    REC BC
    Nieuwe Achtergracht 166  Amsterdam
    Room number: B4.06
  • Postal address:
    Postbus  15629
    1001 NC  Amsterdam
    T: 0205254180



I am a Human Geographer, with a specialisation in Human Geography of Developing Countries. As off 2010 I am assistant professor (UD) at the Department of Geography, Planning and International Development Studies (GPIO) of UvA. 

My research focuses on small and medium sized cities, particularly in The Caribbean. Leading in my work is a focus on exclusion and inequality. These come back in the more specific themes that I conduct research on: urban governance and spatial planning, climate change, livelihoods and entrepreneurship.

Recently, I have been involved in several collaborative research programs with the University of the Westindies, University of Guyana and the Anton de Kom University of Suriname on knowledge, spatial planning and climate change (see  As of June 1st 2013 I hold a guest research position at the UNESCO-IHE in Delft. 

I teach within the master programs International Development Studies, and Human Geography and well as in the research master programs International Development Studies, and Urban Studies. As off September 2013, I  hold the directorship of the research master Urban Studies.


In 2013 I took up a volunteer position as Global Advisor to the UN Global Compact Cities Programme ( I am a board member of the Instituut ter bevordering van de Surinamistiek ( and Stichting Vista, as well as advisor to the Johan Ferrier Fonds ( 



I teach various courses related to International Development Studies in general, to Urban Studies and to Research Methods and Techniques. The courses I teach are part of the curriculum of the Research Master International Development Studies, the Master International Development Studies and in the Master Human Geography. In addition to this, I supervise student fieldwork and thesis-writing. From september 2013 I am director of the Research Master Urban Studies.


Research Master Urban Studies (RM-US)

The RM-US combines the disciplines of urban geography, economic geography, urban and regional planning, and urban sociology, to provide a multidisciplinary and comprehensive approach to urban change. An important theme throughout the programme is the international comparison of urban phenomena, as exemplified by a comparative methodology course and the requirement of an international comparison in the Master’s thesis. A unique feature of the programme, related to this focus on international comparison, is the semester abroad at one of our exchange partner institutes in Europe, North America or East Asia. As of September 2013 I will be heading the program. For more information on it, please check the website


Master International Development Studies (MA-IDS)

The MA-IDS provides students with a thorough background in contemporary theories and debates in international development, as well as specific insights into key themes within international development processes. A characteristic feature of this Master’s programme is a fieldwork period of roughly 8-10 weeks in country in the global south.Within this program I teach the compulsory courseCore Issues in International Development Studies: theoretical approaches and current debates and the elective course Urban Inequalities. In addition I supervise MA-fieldwork and thesis projects focusing on the Caribbean, on urban development, climate change, inequality and exclusion and livelihood and entrepreneurship. For more information on the program and the course, visit the website of the program: 

Research Master International Development Studies (RM-IDS)

The RM-IDS  focuses on development processes and transformations and shifting balances of power in the Global South. It concentrates on current debates on political, social, cultural, environmental and economic issues. The programme trains students in a variety of research methodologies and techniques to understand these processes from a predominantly Southern and internationally comparative perspective. Within this program I teach the compulsory course Research Design: Mixed Methods.  In addition, I supervise students with fieldwork, thesis writing and article development, mostly, but not exclusively linked to my research interests. Check the website for RM-IDS for information on the program: 


Human Geography (HG)

In the context of urban and political geographies, HG offers a broad range of geographical subdisciplines and skills to engage with the multi-scalar character of social, political, economic and cultural processes, and the associated spatial structures.  Within this program I teach the elective course Development Geography.

See the website for more information 


  • Pfeffer, K., & Verrest, H. (2016). Perspectives on the Role of Geo-Technologies for Addressing Contemporary Urban Issues: Implications for IDS. European Journal of Development Research, 28(2), 154-166. DOI: 10.1057/ejdr.2016.4 [details]
  • Verrest, H. (2016). The mixed role of local communities in home-based economic activities in Caribbean cities. In C. Mason, D. Reuschke, S. Syrett, & M. van Ham (Eds.), Entrepreneurship in cities: neighbourhoods, households and homes (pp. 249-270). (Entrepreneurship, space and place). Cheltenham: Edward Elgar. DOI: 10.4337/9781784712006.00022 [details]
  • van Roozendaal, G. C., & Verrest, H. J. L. M. (2016). External CSR as strategic action in the shadow of commercial interests. A study into oil and gas companies in Trinidad and Tobago. Economic and Environmental studies, 16(3), 469-490. [details]


  • Gupta, J., Pfeffer, K., Ros-Tonen, M., & Verrest, H. (2015). An inclusive development perspective on the geographies of urban governance. In J. Gupta, K. Pfeffer, H. Verrest, & M. Ros-Tonen (Eds.), Geographies of urban governance: advanced theories, methods and practices (pp. 217-228). Cham: Springer. DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-21272-2_11 [details]
  • Gupta, J., Pfeffer, K., Ros-Tonen, M., & Verrest, H. (2015). Setting the scene: the geographies of urban governance. In J. Gupta, J. Pfeffer, K. Verrest, & M. Ros-Tonen (Eds.), Geographies of urban governance: advanced theories, methods and practices (pp. 3-25). Cham: Springer. DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-21272-2_1 [details]
  • Gupta, J., Verrest, H., & Jaffe, R. (2015). Theorizing governance. In J. Gupta, K. Pfeffer, H. Verrest, & M. Ros-Tonen (Eds.), Geographies of urban governance: advanced theories, methods and practices (pp. 27-43). Cham: Springer. DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-21272-2_2 [details]
  • Pfeffer, K., Verrest, H., & Poorthuis, A. (2015). Big Data for better urban life?: An exploratory study of critical urban issues in two Caribbean cities: Paramaribo (Suriname) and Port of Spain (Trinidad and Tobago). European Journal of Development Research, 27(4), 505-522. DOI: 10.1057/ejdr.2015.48 [details]
  • James, P., & Verrest, H. (2015). Beyond the network effect: towards an alternative understanding of global urban organizations. In J. Gupta, K. Pfeffer, H. Verrest, & M. Ros-Tonen (Eds.), Geographies of urban governance: advanced theories, methods and practices (pp. 65-84). Cham: Springer. DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-21272-2_4 [details]


  • Verrest, H., & Hoefte, R. (2014). The development of Paramaribo in the second half of the century. In R. Hoefte (Ed.), Suriname in the long twentieth century: domination, contestation, globalization (pp. 159-186). New York: Palgrave Macmillan. DOI: 10.1057/9781137360137.0011 [details]
  • Middelbeek, L., Kolle, K., & Verrest, H. (2014). Built to last? Local climate change adaptation and governance in the Caribbean-The case of an informal urban settlement in Trinidad and Tobago. Urban Climate, 8, 138-154. DOI: 10.1016/j.uclim.2013.12.003 [details]
  • van der Mark, E. J., & Verrest, H. (2014). Fighting the odds: strategies of female caregivers of disabled children in Zimbabwe. Disability & Society, 29(9), 1412-1427. DOI: 10.1080/09687599.2014.934441 [details]


  • Verrest, H. (2013). Rethinking microentrepreneurship and business development programs: vulnerability and ambition in low-income urban Caribbean households. World Development, 47(July), 58-70. DOI: 10.1016/j.worlddev.2013.02.016 [details]
  • Verrest, H., Moorcroft, S., & Mohammed, A. (2013). Global urban development programmes and local realities in the Caricom-Caribbean: mismatches in needs and approach. Habitat International, 40, 258-267. DOI: 10.1016/j.habitatint.2013.05.008 [details]


  • Verrest, H., & Jaffe, R. (2012). Bipolar antagonism and multipolar coexistence: framing difference and shaping fear in two Caribbean cities. Social & Cultural Geography, 13(6), 625-644. DOI: 10.1080/14649365.2012.713506 [details]



  • Verrest, H. (2009). Caribbean urban livelihoods and policies: targeting assets, vulnerability and diversity. In D. McGregor, D. Dodman, & D. Barker (Eds.), Global change and Caribbean vulnerability: environment, economy and society at risk (pp. 336-362). Kingston: University of the West Indies Press. [details]


  • Verrest, H. (2008). Working from home: urban livelihoods in low-income Surinamese and Trinidadian households. In R. Jaffe (Ed.), The Caribbean city (pp. 247-274). Kingston: Ian Randle. [details]


  • Verrest, H. J. L. M., & Post, J. (2007). Home-based economic activities, livelihoods and space in Paramaribo, Suriname. International Development Planning Review, 26(2), 161-184. [details]


  • Verrest, H. (2015). [Review of: B. Meeks (2014) Critical interventions in Caribbean politics and theory]. Revista Europea de Estudios Latinoamericanos y del Caribe, 99, 176-178. DOI: 10.18352/erlacs.10111 [details] [PDF]


  • Mans, U., Meerow, S., & Verrest, H. (2013). Best practices in urban planning and management technologies: Netherlands best practice. (Working paper series: land and urban management). Kingston: The University of the West Indies. [details] [PDF]
  • Verrest, H. (Author). (2013). Microfinance is blind to aspects of inclusion. The Broker. [details]
  • James, P., & Verrest, H. (2013). An independent review of the national spatial development strategy reports for Trinidad and Tobago. Melbourne & New York: UN Global Compact Cities Programme. [details] [PDF]


  • Verrest, H. (2011). Stadsstudies ontmoeten ontwikkelingsstudies [Bespreking van: J. Beall, S. Fox (2009) Cities and development]. Rooilijn, 44(5), 382-384. [details]
  • van Niekerk, N. G. W., Mastwijk, K., Cornelissen, W. J., Verrest, H. J. L. M., & Willems, M. P. J. (2011). Evaluatie van de Twinningfaciliteit Suriname-Nederland. (IOB Evaluatie; No. 361). Den Haag: Ministerie van Buitenlandse Zaken. [details]


  • Verrest, H. (2010). Paramaribo: Caribische stad zonder scheidslijnen. Rooilijn, 43(3), 162-169. [details]


  • Verrest, H. J. L. M., & Reddock, R. E. (2004). Poverty and statistics in Trinidad and Tobago, an introduction. Caribbean Dialogue, 9(4), 1-7. [details]


  • Verrest, H. (2011). "Something to keep me going": The role of vulnerability and ambition in understanding micro-entrepreneurship and the irrelevance of business development programs for low-income groups in Caribbean cities. Paper presented at 13th EADI general conference 2011: Rethinking development in the age of scarcity: new values, voices and alliances for increased resilience, . [details]


  • Verrest, H. J. L. M. (2009). Coping in times of crisis: livelihoods in Suriname 1982-1994. Paper presented at 34th CSA Annual Conference, Kingston Jamaica, . [details]


  • Verrest, H. J. L. M. (2008). Paramaribo: People, Space and Change in the 20th Century. Paper presented at 33rd CSA Annual Conference, San Andrés Isla, Colombia, . [details]


  • Verrest, H. J. L. M. (2007). Home-based economic activities and Caribbean urban livelihoods: vulneralbility, ambition and impact in Paramaribo and Port of Spain [details] [PDF]


  • Verrest, H.J.L.M. (participant) (11-10-2005): Co-organiser AMIDSt/CERES workshop, Amsterdam (participating in a conference, workshop, ...).
  • Verrest, H.J.L.M. (participant) (11-3-2005): Co-organiser seminar, Augustine (participating in a conference, workshop, ...).
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