Researcher, academic and practitioner with 10 years of experience in the fields of community-supported agriculture, natural resource management and community development. Specialised in the intersections between sustainable agri-food systems, participatory community development, forestry and community economic development. PhD Candidate, tutor, guest lecturer and research assistant at The University of Queensland. Currently researching and coordinating community-supported agriculture initiatives and community economic development schemes for sustainable agri-food systems in Australia and India.


Before starting his PhD at UQ, Daniel worked as a project coordinator, lead researcher, research assistant and intern for projects in Australia, India, Colombia, Brazil, Nepal, South Africa and Namibia, managed by leading organisations and best-practice examples in the fields of agri-food research and management, natural resource management, innovation research and sustainable development, such as The Centre for International Forestry Research-CIFOR, the Consultative Group for International Agricultural Research-CGIAR, CSIRO, Global Change Institute, IRDNC and WWF, among others. He has a track-record of 38 publications issued as books, book chapters, conference papers, community-based publications, video-clips, and papers in renowned peer-reviewed journals, such as Oryx and Ecology & Society.


Master in Development Practice in the field of Community Development, The University of Queensland, Australia

BSc in Ecology, Pontifical Xavierian University, Colombia

Current PhD research project:

"Community-based agriculture, community development and food sovereignty in India: lessons for transformative change and sustainable agri-food systems globally".

Funded by The Crawford Fund/Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR), and the Research Training Program of the Australian Department of Education, Skills and Employment through The University of Queensland.

Supervisors: Associate Professor Elske van de Fliert and Dr Lynda Shevellar

Involvement in other current projects:

“Fair Food Futures: Engaging civil society in transforming food systems and localising the Sustainable Development Goals”. Australian Research Council -The University of Queensland (2019-2023)

Research interests

  • Food Sovereignty
  • Food Security
  • Sustainable Agri-food systems
  • Community-supported Agriculture
  • Forestry
  • Community Development
  •  Community Economic Development
  • Community-Based Natural Resource Management and Conservation
  • Communication for Social Change
  • Participatory Rural Communication


Selected publications

Books, Chapters, Conference Papers & Reports

Cruz, D., van de Fliert, E. & L. Shevellar (2020). Transformative social change, discourses and participatory practices by food sovereignty movements in India. Paper presented at the Conference of the International Association for Media and Communication Research: Reimagining the digital future: building inclusiveness, respect and reciprocity. (Participatory Communication Research Section). Tampere, Finland, July 2020

Cruz, D., van de Fliert, E. & L. Shevellar (2020). Materialising food sovereignty in India: conscientisation and democratic participation impacts by two farmers’ movements. Paper presented at the Conference of the International Association for Media and Communication Research: Reimagining the digital future: building inclusiveness, respect and reciprocity. (Rural Communication Working Group). Tampere, Finland, July 2020

Cruz, D., (2019). Agro-ecological research, innovation and training in India and Australia: sharing knowledge for a sustainable future. Crawford Fund in Queensland Research Awards Report. Crawford Fund – ACIAR.

Kadel, L., Lacey, J., Ahmad, F., Hayes, K., Goodrich, G., C., Cruz, D., Milne, G., Darbas, T., Olsen, K. (2017). Making Gender Count: Leveraging Monitoring & Evaluation to mainstream gender. South Asia Sustainable Development Investment Portfolio (SDIP). CSIRO, Australia. EP171633.

Hall, N., Acosta, C., Jagals, P., Currie, D., Ossa-Moreno, J., Dean, A., Ross, H., Bowling, T., Hill, P., Head, B., Richards, R., Willis, J., Abal, E. & D. Cruz. (2016). Strengthening community participation in meeting UN Sustainable Development Goal 6 for water, sanitation and hygiene. Discussion Paper, Global Change Institute, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia.

Gómez J., van Vliet, N., Restrepo, S., Daza, E., Moreno J., Cruz, D & R. Nasi. (2016). Use and trade of bushmeat in Colombia: Relevance to rural livelihoods. CIFOR Info Brief, No159.

Moreno, J, Cruz, D., van Vliet, N., & Quiceno P. (2016). Local perceptions about the potential of bushmeat certification as an alternative of sustainable use (Leticia, Amazonas, Colombia) In: Schor T. (Ed.) Dinâmica Urbana na Amazônia brasileira. (pp 230-248). Manaus: Editora da Universidade Federal do Amazonas. (SPANISH-PORTUGUESE).

Garcia C., van Vliet N., Ponta N. & D. Cruz. (2015). Learning begins when gaming stops. Role playing games and community wildlife management in the Colombian Amazon. In: Resilience of tropical ecosystems: future challenges and opportunities. Kettle Chris J. & Magrach Ainhoa (Eds.). Annual Conference of the Society for Tropical Ecology. Zurich, Switzerland.

Quiceno-Mesa M., van Vliet N., Moreno J. & Cruz D. (2015). Assessment of the bushmeat trade in the cities of Colombia. Ocassional Paper#136. Bogor, Indonesia: CIFOR. (SPANISH).

van Vliet N, Quiceno-Mesa MP, Cruz D & Yagüe B, (2014). Bushmeat and Food Security in the trifrontier Amazon region (Colombia, Peru & Brazil). CGIAR, USAID, CIFOR, Fundación SI, UFAM,. 24 p. Bogotá, D.C (SPANISH & PORTUGUESE).

Cruz D. (2014). Indigenous Hunting Management Transformations in the “Estrella Fluvial de Inírida. In Trujillo F., Usma J. & Lasso C. (Eds). Biodiveristy of the “Estrella Fluvial de Inírida” (pp 250-275). WWF Colombia – Fundación Omacha - Institute of Biological Resources Research "Alexander Von Humboldt". (SPANISH).

van Vliet N, Quiceno-Mesa MP, Cruz D, Morsello C, Adams C, Mori F, Yagüe B, Hernández S, Bonilla T, Tellez L, Neves de Aquino L, Moreno J, Schor T, De Oliveira Princi M, Haiden E, Trujillo F, Nasi R. (2014). Bushmeat in the tri-frontier region of Brazil, Peru and Colombia: Demise or persistence? Occasional Paper #118. Bogor, Indonesia

Trujillo F, Cruz D., Caro A, Martínez S. (2014). Abundance of aquatic fauna and conflicts with fish resources in the Estrella Fluvial de Inírida. In Trujillo F., Usma J. & Lasso C. (Eds). Biodiveristy of the “Estrella Fluvial de Inírida” (pp 202-233). WWF Colombia – Fundación Omacha - Institute of Biological Resources Research "Alexander Von Humboldt". (SPANISH).

Trujillo, F, Cruz D, Trujillo D, Hernández S, Yucuna J & Martínez S. (2013). Armadillos in the indigenous and “Llanero” worlds. In: Trujillo F. & Superina M. (Eds). Armadillos of the Llanos Orientales. (pp 49-65). Fundación Omacha- Corporinoquia, Cormacarena, Bioparque Los Ocarros, ODL. (SPANISH).

Papers in peer-reviewed journals

van Vliet, N., Quiceno, M., Moreno, J., Cruz, D., Fa, J. E., & Nasi, R. (2017). Is urban bushmeat trade in Colombia really insignificant?. Oryx, 51(2), 305-314.

Vanegas, L., N. van Vliet, D. Cruz & F. Sandrin. (2016). Protein contribution of wild and domestic animals in rural, peri-urban and urban diets in different regions of Colombia. Biota Colombiana 17 (1): 26-43. (SPANISH).

Sarti, F. M., C. Adams, C. Morsello, N. Van Vliet, T. Schor, B. Yagüe, L. Tellez, M. Quiceno-Mesa, & D. Cruz. (2015). Beyond protein intake: bushmeat as source of micronutrients in the Amazon. Ecology and Society 20(4): 22.

van Vliet, N., M. P. Quiceno, D. Cruz, L. J. Neves de Aquino, B. Yagüe, T. Schor, S. Hernandez, & R. Nasi. (2015). Bushmeat networks link the forest to urban areas in the trifrontier region between Brazil, Colombia, and Peru. Ecology and Society 20(3): 21.

van Vliet, N., D. Cruz, M. Quiceno-Mesa, L. Neves de Aquino, J. Moreno, R. Rairon, and J. Fa. (2015). Ride, shoot, and call: wildlife use among contemporary urban hunters in Três Fronteiras, Brazilian Amazon. Ecology and Society 20(3): 8.

van Vliet, N., Quiceno-Mesa, M., Cruz, D., Tellez, L., Martins, C., Haiden, E., Oliveira, M., Adams, C., Morsello, C., Valencia, L., Bonilla, T., Yagüe, B., & Nasi, R. (2015). From fish and bushmeat to chicken nuggets: the nutrition transition in a continuum from rural to urban settings in the Tri frontier Amazon region. Ethnobiology and Conservation, 4.

Quiceno-Mesa M., Cruz D., van Vliet N., Neves L & T. Schor (2014). The invisibility of the bushmeat market chains in the triple frontier between Colombia, Peru and Brazil. Revista Colombia Amazónica. 7 (51-72). (SPANISH).

van Vliet, N., Quiceno Mesa, M., Cruz, D., Neves de Aquino, L., Moreno, J., & Nasi, R. (2014). The uncovered volumes of bushmeat commercialized in the Amazonian trifrontier between Colombia, Peru & Brazil. Ethnobiology and Conservation, 3.

Community and pedagogical publications

Rodríguez P, Superina M, Cruz D & Trujillo F. (2013). Armadillos of the Llanos Orientales of Colombia. Fundación Omacha-ODL-Corporinoquia-Cormacarena-Bioparque Los Ocarros (SPANISH). 978-958-8554-32-7

Cruz D. (Ed.) (2011). The Management of animals: Rescuing Our Traditional Knowledge, La Ceiba Village, Pirrinchi-Junsu-Busagú. La Ceiba Indigenous Reserve, Inírida-Colombia (SPANISH). ISBN: 978-958-8554-17-4.

Cruz, D, Barrientos, P & D. Morales-Betancourt. (2009). Illegal Wildlife trade: Threats to the Tuparro Biosphere Reserve, a teacher’s and student’s guide. Fundación Omacha-Fundación Horizonte Verde. Proyecto Pijiwi-Orinoko - USAID. Bogotá. (SPANISH). ISBN: 978-958-8554-02-0.