Social & Cultural

This theme covers social aspects of the food system, including consumer culture in relation to food, the history of food and the development of agriculture, interactions between food and other social issues, and the wider implications of food-related technologies.

People » Jim Hall

Director, Environmental Change Institute. Professor of Climate and Environmental Risk (School of Geography and the Environment)

Professor Jim Hall FREng is Director of the Environmental Change Institute

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People » Kenneth Howse

James Martin Senior Fellow

Kenneth Howse is a Senior Research Fellow at the Oxford Institute of Population Ageing, Editor of Ageing Horizons and Director of the PCAP Centre.

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People » Lesley Paterson

Senior Facilitator and Coordinator, Public Engagement with Research

Dr Lesley Paterson is Senior Facilitator & Coordinator, Public Engagement with Research, in Research Services at the University of Oxford. She is the senior advisor for

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People » Loretta Ieng Tak Lou

Postdoctoral Associate, Institute of Social and Cultural Anthropology

Dr. Loretta Lou is a Postdoctoral Associate at the Institute of Social and Cultural Anthropology (ISCA), University of Oxford. Her doctoral thesis is an ethnographic study of "green living" and its implications for self-understanding, social relations, ethics, and political mobilisation in post-handover Hong Kong. Loretta is interested in the urban farming movement in East Asia.

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People » Maja Založnik

Post-doctoral Researcher, Oxford Institute of Population Ageing, Department of Zoology

Maja Založnik is working on an Oxford Martin Programme on the Future of Food project investigating how changes in the age and educational structure of farming populations interact with changing pest populations to affect food security.

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People » Mark Hirons

Post-Doctoral Researcher

Mark is a post-doctoral researcher working on the Ecosystem Services and Poverty Alleviation (ESPA) ECOLIMITS project. This interdisciplinary project will be investigating the linkages between ecosystem service provision and the multiple dimensions of poverty in coffee- and cocoa-dominated agricultural settings, focusing on Ethiopia and Ghana respectively. The project will use a range of methods to develop a holistic understanding of how ecosystems influence, and are influenced by, socio-economic, political and cultural conditions across various scales.

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People » Max Roser

Research Fellow

Max Roser is an economist interested in long-term trends, living standards and inequality.

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People » Meg Wiessner

MSc Nature, Society and Environmental Policy

Meg's research interests lie in urban livability and equality, food systems, and materials development. Her work has focused on a variety of topics, including: conflicts and competing narratives around development and urban agriculture; sustainable materials development in textiles and additive manufacturing; and connections between luxury eco-consumption and cultural appropriation. She's now currently working on a variety of projects addressing these issues through the arts. 

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People » Meghan Bailey

DPhil Student, Environmental Change Institute

Robust Adaptation Planning and Decision-Making: a comparative study of subsistence-oriented communities in the Indo-Gangetic Plain and West Africa.

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People » Nathalie Seddon

Professor of Biodiversity & NERC Knowledge Exchange Fellow

Nathalie Seddon studies the causes and consequences of biodiversity loss and climate change. Her current work as a NERC Knowledge Exchange Fellow and Research Associate of the International Institute for Environment and Development involves translating ecosystem science for the benefit of decision makers in government and business in order to bring the equitable protection of nature to the centre of the sustainable development agenda.

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