William Critchley was born in UK during 1952. He attended Reading University, where he gained an honours degree in agriculture. After this he began his professional career as a volunteer agriculturalist in the highlands of Kenya. He stayed in Kenya for a total of 13 years, working on district based development projects for the World Bank and for USAID - where he began to specialise in water harvesting for plant production. In 1987, after returning to home base in Europe, he led the World Bank's "Sub-Saharan Water Harvesting Study" as a consultant. Later, he was employed by the VU University Amsterdam's Centre for International Cooperation, where he headed the Sustainable Land Management unit. He gained his PhD in soil and water conservation in 2000. Teaching a popular, specialised course on Sustainable Land Management and Master's student supervision took up a good deal of his time. William Critchley is known for being co-editor of the book "Where the Land is Greener" (the first major WOCAT publication), and more recently wrote and directed a film and book on good news in Africa – namely “More People, More Trees" (Practical Action Publications). Having left the university in 2012 he returned to UK for semi-retirement. His current work activities include project design, technical and methodology backstopping, and evaluation. In 2016 he was awarded the Tropical Agricultural Association’s “Development Agriculturalist of the Year”.