A specialist in value chain assessments, voluntary standards and inclusive development, David’s role at the Impact Facility centres on the development of credible and cost-efficient monitoring and evaluation systems to measure project impact in alignment with the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.
As part of his degree in international development management, David gained practical experience working with smallholder cotton farmers in India, where he helped introduce smart technology to catalyse the adoption sustainable production practices. His award-winning in-depth analysis of the artisanal gold value chain in east Africa, published in 2018, formed the foundation for the development of a scalable aggregation mechanism grouping hubs comprising several ASM operations strategically to reach sufficient volume to make direct trade economically viable.
David now leads a multi-stakeholder initiative focused on the roll out of asset financing solutions providing much needed equipment through to artisanal and small-scale gold mines throughout sub-Saharan Africa. He continues operationalising export hubs for gold brokering deals with local middleman, negotiating contracts with refiners, and navigating international legislative and compliance requirements.
David leads efforts to update the Impact Facility’s tools and approaches in line with learnings and feedback from the field, to ensure that the Impact Facility and its partner mines are best equipped to achieve positive change. David is currently conducting field research on the topic of financial service provision and is scoping out opportunities to scale the Impact Facility’s reach through partnership with other organisations.
David holds a BSc in international development management with a special focus on sustainable value chain management and a minor in conflict studies from Van Hall Larenstein University of Applied Sciences in the Netherlands.
“Cobalt is key to enabling a speedy transition to a green, post-carbon economy. The DRC’s unparalleled cobalt endowments should serve as a catalyst for local development. By investing in the professionalisation of artisanal mining and creating dignified employment opportunities throughout local mining communities, we can help turn this mineral wealth into lasting prosperity. To make this happen, we need to dare to be part of the solution.”
David Sturmes posts
FCA Quarterly Update – Q2 2022
In the second quarter of 2022, the FCA has made considerable progress in its efforts to support the transformation of the artisanal cobalt sector in the DRC. After a thorough recruitment process, we are excited to welcome to our team Alex Deprez, the new Country Director for the FCA. Leveraging more than two decades of […]
FCA Quarterly Update – Q1 2022
With this blog, we’d like to reflect on the progress our team has made during the first quarter of 2022. Before we go into this, however, we would like to first remember the death of 6 workers at the Kamilombe mine in late January on which we previously reflected in a blog following these tragic […]
The fatal toll of artisanal cobalt mining continues. Is responsible ASM even possible?
At the Kamilombe mine site on January 22nd and 24th, just outside Kapata in Lualaba and home to more than two dozen informal cobalt mines, six men lost their lives during two separate incidents. Sixteen of their colleagues were rescued in time.
ASM Cobalt’s role and the green energy transition: championing equitable supply
As we launch into 2022, we’re also reflecting on the progress we made at the Fair Cobalt Alliance in 2021. Last year, we welcomed new members from across the battery supply chain and stepped up our operations to improve mine sites, support child labour remediation and much more.