Members of the Anthropology of Food Network

Bios and research interests of selected members, showing the wide array of backgrounds and specialties of our network members.

Aida Aaly Alymbaeva (Max Plank Institute for Social Anthropology, Germany) – I am writing about identity politics and on ethnic minority-majority relations in Central Asia, and Kyrgyzstan particularly: how people refer to food to differentiate themselves from some groups or associate with others is one of the issues I am interested in. I have edited a collection of ethnographic essays on relations of food and identity in Central Asia. Another aspect of my writing is the way how Central Asian food has been reflected in Internet space in accordance with ideas of nations.

Pablo Alonso González (Spanish National Research Council; Institute of Natural Products and Agrobiology) – Pablo Alonso González is filmmaker and tenure track anthropologist at CSIC, Spain. He holds PhDs in History (University of Leon, Spain) and Heritage Studies (University of Cambridge, UK). He has directed various documentary films and published a number of books on social theory and cultural heritage, specializing in Spain and Cuba. His recent work addresses wine culture and heritage.

Daniela Ana (Leibniz Institute for Agricultural Economics in Transition Economies) – Social anthropologist working on land use and place attachment in Eastern Europe.

Atak Ayaz (The Geneva Graduate Institute) – I am a Ph.D. candidate at the Geneva Graduate Institute—IHEID. My ongoing project, “Wine Complexities,” narrates the different phases of creation and various aspects of valuation of the quality-wine in Turkey. By focusing on the country’s first oenotourism route, Trakya Bağ Rotası, my dissertation portrays how the market of quality wine comes into being in Turkey via bureaucratic infusions and complications in defining taste and quality.

Imogen Bevan (Department of Social Anthropology, University of Edinburgh, UK) – My PhD research explores the social role of sweet foods and drinks for families in urban Scotland, from an anthropological perspective. I ask how sweet treats and sugary foods are consumed in practice, and the kinds of social bonding these foods enable between members of kin, neighbours, and colleagues.

Zofia Boni (Department of Anthropology, Adam Mickiewicz University, Poland; SOAS Food Studies Centre, University of London, UK) – My research focuses on the political and moral economies of food. I am particularly interested in children’s food and the negotiations regarding feeding children, which include not only families or schools, but also state institutions, food industry and public opinion. Building on critical nutrition studies, I am currently conducting research on the social dynamics of childhood obesity in Poland.

Lorenzo Cañás Bottos (Dept of Social Anthropology, Norwegian University of Science and Technology) – I have done fieldwork on Old Colony Mennonites in Argentina and Bolivia, on Catholic and Protestants along the Irish/Norther Irish border, on descendants of Lebanese and Syrians in Argentina, and on "Pata Negra" pig rearing in Extremadura, Spain. I am interested in food change and chains, and relationship between food, heritage, industrialization and standardization.

Nadia Cipullo (Business Administration, Link Campus University, Rome, Italy) – I am interested in foodways valorisation for the sustainable growth of territories. My focus is on Territorial Units - Cities, Regions, Biodistricts, Hubs -, as they can play a fundamental role in the safeguard and promotion of this intangible heritage, through suitable processes of stakeholder engagement, data collection, valuation and reporting.

Virginie Córdoba Wolff (Université de Strasbourg) - PhD in sociology ; studies carried out on gluten-free food. Research themes: food (food practices, representations and discourse around food), body, health, environment.

Carole Counihan (Millersville University, Millersville, USA) – Carole Counihan is Professor Emerita of Anthropology at Millersville University and editor-in-chief of the scholarly journal Food and Foodways. Her research interests are food activism, gender, and identity in Italy and the USA. She is author and editor of several books including Italian Food Activism in Urban Sardinia (2019, Italian edition 2020), A Tortilla Is Like Life (2009), Around the Tuscan Table (2004), and The Anthropology of Food and Body (1999).

Francesco Della Costa (Zentrum für Israel Studien - Ludwig-Maximilians - Universität München) – I am a cultural anthropologist affiliated with the Center for Israel Studies at the LMU of Munich (Germany), and I also lecture the course "Introduction to Anthropology of Food" at the School of Life Sciences of TUM (Germany). Beside my study of metaphor, ritual and literature, my research focuses on the role of food in the local redefinition of globalization. I carry out my fieldwork mainly in Israel and in Italy.

Ricard Espelt (Internet Interdisciplinary Institute, Open University of Catalonia, Spain) – I am interested in the impact of Information and Communications Technology (ITC) in the agroecology of food consumption, especially in the cooperativism and the collaborative models, which take advantage of Social and Solidarity Economy (ESS) and digital commons.

Rebecca Feinberg (University of California, Santa Cruz, USA) – I am interested in how concepts of place, taste, and value transform as climate change and immigration remake landscapes and communities. My research is based in the wine producing regions of Northwest Italy and California, where I work closely with growers and vintners as they navigate global markets and collaborate with unruly plants.

Gisele Fonseca Chagas (Department of Anthropology /Federal Fluminense University, Rio de Janerio, Brazil) – My research focuses on the ways in which Islamic religious knowledges are produced in Muslim communities in Brazil and Syria. I have recently begun researching food experiences among Syrian refugees in Brazil, and the manners they are constructing a new life by cooking and selling Arab food in Brazilian context.

Michele Filippo Fontefrancesco (University of Gastronomic Sciences) – Network co-convenor. Michele Filippo Fontefrancesco is Assistant Professor of Cultural Anthropology at the University of Gastronomic Sciences, in Italy, and Fellow of the Department of Anthropology of Durham University. His research deals with local development, food heritage preservation and entrepreneurship in Southern Europe and Eastern Africa. He is author of several publications among which: Food Festivals and Local Development (2020), The Ark of Taste in Tanzania (edited by Dauro M. Zocchi, 2021) and Traditional Food Knowledge: New Wine Into Old Wineskins? (edited with Andrea Pieroni and Ina Vandebroek).

Jérémie Forney (Anthropology Institute, University of Neuchâtel, Switzerland) – Jérémie is professor of Environmental Anthropology and co-director of the CEDD-Agro-Eco-Clim, a transdisciplinary centre for the development of sustainable agroecological systems in the Swiss Jura. At the core of his work is a critical engagement with the governance of food and agricultural assemblages. His expertise covers a diversity of fields related to food and agriculture: family farming, agricultural policies and markets, alternative food systems, certification, agri-environmental governance.

Tristan Fournier (Iris – CNRS) – My work focuses mainly on the social, moral and political issues of food changes, and questions the status of scientific knowledge as well as the relationships between food, health and the body. After having led or participated in different interdisciplinary research programs on sanitary crisis, chronic pathologies and disorders, aging, and food heritagization, I currently work on emerging food promises that aim to (re)connect eaters to their environment.

Cynthia Gharios (Leipzig University) – My principal research interests lie in the field of agri-food studies and critical agrarian studies, with a particular focus on the Middle East and North Africa region. I am interested in questions of imaginaries of agrarian future(s), the financialization of agriculture, land grabs and foreign direct investment, the globalization of agriculture and food, political ecology and cultural geography, and technology, big data, precision agriculture and smart farming.

Magdalena Góralska (University of Warsaw) – Magdalena is researching practices around information exchange on nutrition and health. A convenor of the MAYS EASA network, she is engaged in the medical anthropology community. She has previously worked on topics such as urban transformation, political culture in post-socialist context, and digital healthcare.

Wojciech Goszczynski (Nicolaus Copernicus University) – Food researcher and sociologist focused on rural studies, consumers studies, Eastern European Studies.

Katharina Graf (Goethe University Frankfurt, SOAS Food Studies Centre) – Katharina Graf is a postdoctoral research fellow at Goethe University Frankfurt, where she leads the DFG-funded ethnographic research project "Cyborg Cook" at the Institute of Cultural Anthropology and European Ethnology. Previously, she was a postdoctoral research fellow and doctoral researcher at the SOAS Food Studies Centre in London.

Stephanie Ketterer Hobbis (Sociology of Development and Change, Wageningen University, the Netherlands) – My food-centric research is situated at the intersections of food, place and belonging with a particular interest in the politics of food-based encounters in post-conflict environments. I am also involved in debates that connect food studies with linguistic anthropology. My current regional focus is on Melanesia (Solomon Islands and Papua New Guinea).

Patricia Homs (Social and Cultural Anthropology Department at the University of Barcelona) – Patricia Homs is an Associate Professor and interdisciplinary researcher focused on economic models, social innovation, cooperatives, social and solidarity economy (SSE), feminist economy, agroecological food systems and food policies. She is a member of the Agroecological Cooperative L’Aresta, where she is responsible for the area of Research and Education and member of the Reciprocity Studies Group (University of Barcelona). She has been member under contract of working and research teams of several research projects linked to food and agroecological transition.

Renata E. Hryciuk (Institute of Ethnology and Cultural Anthropology, University of Warsaw, Poland) – My research interests include heritagization of native foodways, culinary tourism, new culinary elites, Oaxaca, Mexico, feminist perspective.

Gerelene Jagganath (School of Social Sciences, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban, South Africa) – I am an anthropologist and have a diverse knowledge of social institutions and global social challenges. I am currently a lecturer and researcher with an interest in migration & diaspora studies, youth & substance abuse, food & nutrition in Africa. My knowledge from teaching and exposure to research as well as supervision of postgraduate students in the Social Sciences has equipped me with insight and experience in many areas of development.

Joana Lucas (NOVA University of Lisbon; Center of Research in Anthropology) – Joana Lucas, PhD in Anthropology (2014) from the Faculty of Social and Human Sciences of Universidade Nova de Lisboa (NOVA FCSH), is an integrated researcher at the Center for Research in Anthropology (CRIA) where she coordinates the research group “Practices and Politics of Culture". She is currently an Invited Assistant Professor at the Department of Anthropology at the Faculty of Social and Human Sciences at Universidade Nova de Lisboa (NOVA FCSH). Her postdoctoral research focuses on the relationship between food, heritage and tourism, through a case study of the classification of the “Mediterranean Diet” as intangible cultural heritage by UNESCO (2010, 2013), carrying out fieldwork in Morocco (Chefchaouen) and Portugal (Tavira).

Daniel Martínez Pérez (Instituto Madrileño de Antropología) – Student of the Master's Degree in anthropological research and its applications. Interest in Food Anthropology, Consumer Anthropology, Economic Anthropology and Urban Anthropology

Diana Mata-Codesal (OACU-Observatory of Anthropology of Urban Conflict, Barcelona, Spain) – I am interested in sensorial accounts, methods and analysis of migration and diversity, particularly in relation to food and food-practices. I published on sensoriality in migrancy and food in belonging-making processes. I recently published an edited book on “food remittances” from and to migrants, Food Parcels in International Migration: Intimate Connections.

Elsa Mescoli (CEDEM - Centre for Ethnic and Migration Studies, Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Liège, Belgium) – I obtained my PhD with a thesis on the culinary practices of Moroccan women in Italy as means to define the self in a context of migration. My main research interests are: Food and migration, Material culture and subjectivation, Refugee studies, Arts and migration.

Nefissa Naguib (Department of Anthropology, University of Oslo, Norway) – My current project entitled "Letting go" examines the science of food crafting.

Filippo Oncini (University of Trento, Department of Sociology and Social Research, Italy) – My research interests lie in the fields of consumption and health sociology, with attention to social inequalities and food using both quantitative and qualitative methods.

Giovanni Orlando (University of Turin, Italy) – I have done research and written on aspects of the Italian food economy, especially organic and fair trade foods, both in the north and south of the country. I am also interested in industrial democracy. My research has appeared in Food, Culture & Society, Focaal, and Culture, Agriculture, Food and Environment.

Anil Paralkar (Heidelberg Centre for Transcultural Studies, Ruprecht-Karls-University Heidelberg) – PhD candidate in medieval and modern history; research on food history and the interaction between India and Europe during the 15th to 17th centuries

Sabine Parrish (Centre for Food Policy, City, University of London) – Network co-convenor. Sabine is a Research Fellow at the Centre for Food Policy where she leads qualitative work on socioeconomic inequalities and child weight and diet in London. Previously, she was a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Oxford, and she has conducted extensive ethnographic work on the Brazilian speciality coffee industry.

Suzanne Piscopo (University of Malta) – I am an Associate Professor of Home Economics within the Department of Health, Physical Education and Consumer Studies of the Faculty of Education at the University of Malta. A key focus of my work is promoting healthy, sustainable dietary patterns among different age groups, with a specific interest in the Mediterranean Diet. I am also a leader on projects involving Nutrition Education for young children and on assessment and interventions for food security. Celia Plender (University of Exeter, UK) – I am a Lecturer in Anthropology at the University of Exeter. My work focuses on political-economic change in Britain through the lens of grassroots, community groups, engaging with themes of everyday politics, mutual aid and care. I have conducted long-term ethnographic fieldwork with urban, grassroots food co-ops to explore their everyday practices and responses to the changes taking place around them ranging from neoliberal reform to austerity and now covid-19.

Inga Reimers (HafenCity University Hamburg, Germany) – For my PhD I took meals in public urban space as the starting point for an ethnographic analysis of the everyday phenomenon of eating. The narratives, purposes, and atmospheres associated with these meals led me methodological questions on using meals as experimental research settings. Furthermore, I am conducting research on the role of food practices, places, and narratives in urban and regional development processes in Germany.

Elizabeth Saleh (Center for Arab and Middle East Studies at the American University of Beirut, Lebanon) – I work in the fields of political and economic anthropology. In 2014, I obtained my PhD in Social Anthropology from Goldsmiths, University of London. My doctoral thesis is an ethnography of the Lebanese wine industry. In 2015, I commenced new fieldwork at a Beirut scrapyard where I explore the effects of state policies toward migration and waste management in relation to the prosperity of the scrap metal industry.

Amir Sayadabdi (Victoria University of Wellington) – Amir is mainly interested in anthropology of food and its intersection with gender studies; migration studies; studies of race, ethnicity, and nationalism; Iranian Studies; and Middle Eastern Studies.

Mario Schmidt (Institute for Social and Cultural Anthropology, University of Cologne, Germany) – My research on food primarily deals with how culinary actors in Western Kenya successfully manage to transform parts into wholes. These actors include those who cook, those who serve and those who eat food.

Francis Snyder (Peking University School of Transnational Law) – BA Yale, Fulbright Scholar Sciences Po Paris, JD Harvard Law School, PhD Paris I (Pantheon-Sorbonne); anthropology of law, economic anthropology, food safety law in China; international food trade, food & beverage industry and regional integration throughout the world (EU, USMCA, MERCOSUR, EAEU, RCEP, ASEAN etc); food safety and quality; slow food.

Justyna Straczuk (Institute of Philosophy and Sociology, Polish Academy of Sciences) – Social anthropologist interested in food studies.

Donna Sundbo (Zealand Business Academy) – Anthropologist (Copenhagen University, University of Sussex) PhD in business studies (Roskilde University), post doc in food experiences (Roskilde University), senior lecturer teaching at the Leisure Management education and heading research projects (Zealand Business Academy). Research focuses on food (food experiences, local food, food as culture and identity, foodscapes in tourist destinations, consumer behavior in relation to food), tourism (food tourism, destination development, rural tourism), service studies (service innovation, service encounters). Always open to research collaborations.

Francesca Vaghi (SOAS and Thomas Coram Research Unit (UCL), University of London, UK) – My current research, based in London, focuses on children's eating habits in childcare and at home. Drawing together anthropology of food, childhood studies, and medical anthropology, I am particularly interested in how children's food policy is linked more broadly to family intervention policy, as well as notions of personhood and citizenship.

Clelia Viecelli (University of Southampton, UK) – I am working on female winegrowers producing natural wines in two different regions of Italy; my research interests cover: nature/culture divide; sensorial ethnography; aesthetics of taste; practices and discourses on organic agriculture; local production and global consumption of natural wines.

Marta Villa (Teacher at Università degli Studi di Trento, Italy, and Researcher at Università della Svizzera Italiana, Switzerland) – I study alpine food, identity and alpine rituals, relationship between food and mountain landscape. Now I'm studying the landscape of alpine valley and agricultural transformation through historical and anthropological methodology.

Ute Wallenböck (Masaryk University Brno) – I am currently assistant professor for Chinese Studies at Masaryk University, Brno, in the Czech Republic. Trained as a Sinologist and Tibetologist, I hold a Ph.D. in Chinese Studies from the University of Vienna. My area of concentration was on the Tibeto-Mongol interface at the Sino-Tibetan borderlands. Currently I am working on my new research project on the historical development of the Tibetan cuisine(s) within the theoretical frameworks of cultural entanglement, identity, and globalisation.

Marisa Wilson (Chancellor’s Fellow in Human Geography, University of Edinburgh, UK, and Research Associate in Human Geography at the University of the West Indies, St Augustine, Trinidad and Tobago) – My research relates to the socialites of alternative food networks (e.g. in Cuba) and, more recently, political economic and cultural factors leading to dietary and food systems change. I seek to understand and explain everyday barriers and opportunities for more equitable, healthy and sustainable food systems, particularly (though not exclusively) in post-colonial contexts.