Past Events

Global Food+ Symosium

Global Food+ 2017 was an event held in February 2017 that featured an afternoon of “speed talk” presentations by two dozen top scholars in the Boston area. This event highlighted current research findings at the important nexus between food, agriculture, health, society, and the environment.

The twenty-four presenters included scholars from a wide range of disciplines, including anthropology, economics, political science, history, sociology, engineering, biology, and environmental sciences. Each delivered a seven-minute summary of his or her most recent research findings. The topics covered included cultural practices and veganism, irrigation and food security, farm subsidies, GMOs, cropland productivity and climate change, food contamination, food waste, the environmental consequences of meat consumption, and rural poverty in Africa. 

For more detailed information on the faculty presenters and a detailed event summary report visit the event webpage.


Harvard Food+ Research Symposium

The Harvard Research Symposium on the Nexus of Food, Agriculture, Environment, Health, and Society (or as we call it, the Food+ Symposium) was held on February 27, 2015 to provide attendees with a sense of the excitement and breadth of the Food+ research underway at Harvard and foster cross-fertilization among researchers.

More than 20 Harvard faculty members from 8 schools and a dozen departments gave 7 minute "speed presentations" on their current Food+ research. An audience of more than 250 students, faculty, staff, and citizens from the greater Boston community attended.

For more detailed information on the faculty presenters and a detailed event summary report visit the event webpage.


Foodbetter Harvard Symposium


The Foodbetter Symposium was held on October 3, 2015 to explore the food system's four primary categories: production, marketing and distribution, nutrition, and waste. Experts and Harvard-affiliates addressed how they are working to "foodbetter" or innovate within the topic areas.


Innovation Lab Deans' Food System Challenge


Each year the Harvard Innovation Lab (i-Lab) organizes a series of Deans’ Challenges, or University-wide competitions, that ask students from across the university to develop innovative solutions to pressing social issues. 

During the 2014-15 year, the Deans’ Food System Challenge invited creative and entrepreneurial students to develop innovative ideas to improve the health, social, and environmental outcomes of the food system, both in the United States and around the world.

The Challenge was co-sponsored by Dean Martha Minow of Harvard Law School and Dean Julio Frenk of the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, and included four sub-topics: Producing Sustainable, Nutritious Food;  Innovating in Food Distribution and Markets; Improving Our Diet; and Reducing Food Waste.

An interdisciplinary team planned the 2014–2015 Deans' Food System Challenge, including Harvard Law School, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Harvard Innovation Lab, Harvard Food Law and Policy Clinic, Harvard Business School Digital Initiative, and the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University.


Just Food? Conference


The Food Law Society at Harvard Law School and Food Literacy Project have partnered to organize annual Just Food conferences that educate, empower, energize, and engage all to pursue justice in the food system in our personal and professional study and practice.

Participants gain an understanding about the complexity of the food system and the interconnectedness between the food system and other fields, including domestic policy, international policy, the economy and capitalism, and the environment.

  • The 2016 Harvard Just Food Conference explored land and the food system, how land affects what we eat, who we are, and the environment we live in. For more information visit the event webpage.

  • The 2015 Harvard Just Food conference explored the intersections between social, economic, and environmental justice and the food system. To view videos and other information from the conference visit the event webpage.