Jon Vandenheuvel

Jon Vandenheuvel

Senior Advisor, Africa

Jon Vandenheuvel is CEO of Small Farm Cities Africa. Most recently, Jon was Executive Director for Africa E-Commerce for Dubai Ports World (DP World) and is currently an advisor to the National Planning Commission of Malawi, part of the secondary cities research group. Before that, he was a private sector advisor for African e-Commerce for the Universal Postal Union in Ethiopia and has organized infrastructure and research initiatives in Somalia, Kenya, and Nigeria.


He co-founded a laboratory farm on the shores of Lake Volta in Ghana and co-authored a book based on the lab, Africa Risk Dashboard. He has served as a visiting scholar for Africanurbanism at MIT. Earlier in his career, Jon served as a staff director for the leadership of the U.S. House of Representatives in Washington, D.C. Jon is a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Johanesburg, writing on Somalia’s protracted conflict, and holds a master’s from Johns Hopkins University, and bachelor’s from Wheaton College (IL).

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Somaliland Free Trade Zone Legislation

Somaliland is an autonomous region in the Horn of Africa that unilaterally declared independence from Somalia in 1991. Not only has Somaliland maintained democratic governance, but it has also made continual efforts to improve this governance and recently passed the “Somaliland Special Economic Zones Law.”

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