Alfred studied Physical Geography and Soil Science at the University of Amsterdam and specialised in Soil Erosion and Soil Minerarology in Wageningen (Netherlands) and Versailles (France). His career started with accessing soil erosion the Tamale region in Ghana. He specialised in Geographical Information Systems and set up various systems for Dutch government executive agencies such as the Traffic Accident database operative in Heerlen, an Industrial Estate Plannings System in Zwolle and a Road Maintenance system operative in Utrecht. In 1997 he joined the European Commission to work on the GISCO GIS system of the Commission operated by Eurostat in Luxembourg. He then worked on the setup of a Water course and water bodies inventory system called WISE operated by DG Environment and later by the European Environment Agency. This work also resulted in the creation of a Catchments and River system for Europe CCM, a geometric reference for waterbodies.
In 2007 he was part of the team that set up the European Drought Observatory that in 2014 expanded to a Global Drought Observatory. Collaborations with partners in South America and Africa put him on the track of institution- and capacity building resulting in a system called Droughtwatch. In addition to this he contributed to various standard works on Drought and Disaster Risk reduction in collaboration with the Disaster Risk Management Knowledge Centre.
- Publications (also reports)