Interdisciplinary researcher-led initiative: Food and the Public Good

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Is your research food-related in some way? Then this is for you. Today’s guest post is from Rachael Durrant (Doctoral Researcher, SPRU ). This interdisciplinary event is supported by the Doctoral School’s Researcher-Led Initiative (RLI) fund, and is open to researchers of all career stages, in all schools and departments.

Invitation to register for:

Food and the Public Good

The First Brighton-Sussex Food Research Network Symposium
Monday, 26th November 2012, 10am – 4pm
Rm G24/25, Freeman Centre, University of Sussex

Satelite image of pivot irrigation in northern Saudi Arabia
Pivot irrigation, in northern Saudi Arabia. Image from NASA Earth Observatory, via

Food is fundamental to our existence and has always connected people throughout history.  Moreover, in recent times there have been remarkable changes in food-related energy and land use, distribution systems, technologies, food cultures, and so on, which have undoubtedly transformed every aspect of human life.  Thus, in 2012, academics from across the UK and abroad are being encouraged to focus their research on food, in search of new ways to understand and shape the public good. Several UK universities, including Cambridge, Oxford and others leading the field in research, have launched their own interdisciplinary programmes on food-related topics.

Here at the universities of Brighton and Sussex we have a rich variety of expertise to draw upon.  A food research network spanning the two universities was initiated at the beginning of 2012 and has 40 members and growing, including researchers from the arts and humanities, social and physical sciences, and several different applied disciplines. Nonetheless, we are still largely unfamiliar with each other’s work.

Food and the Public Good: The First Brighton-Sussex Food Research Network Symposium

The symposium will address this lack of knowledge, by raising awareness amongst researchers at both universities of the food related research that is currently underway across different schools and departments.  We want to build new relationships and encourage the development of cross-disciplinary projects on contemporary challenges related to food.

The event is fully catered and structured around short presentations with Q&A plenaries, as well as time to just chat.  We hope this will be small, friendly and informal, aimed at learning and getting to know each other’s work.

Edit 20 Nov 2012: Registration for this event is now closed. For further information, please contact

To register – use the form on our webpage at

Additionally, if you are interested in presenting at the Symposium, why not submit an abstract?

Call for abstracts

We are looking for presentations on on-going or (recently) completed research. Presenters are encouraged to focus on the context of their work bearing in mind that their audience are unlikely to be familiar with the disciplinary background.  As an alternative to presenting your own work exclusively, we also welcome presentations on the different strands of food-related research going on in your department.

Abstracts are invited from researchers at all career stages, from PhD to Professor and from all disciplinary backgrounds.  Although this initiative is primarily internal to the two universities in Brighton, we also welcome abstracts from individuals based at other universities or research institutions, but who have an interest in researching here. Abstracts should be max 300 words, for a presentation of up to 15 minutes. Power point will be available on the day to those who need it, but please feel free to adopt whatever format feels best.

Deadline for abstract submission: Friday 26th October.
Please send abstracts to


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