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Jessica Fanzo

Bloomberg Distinguished Professor of Food Ethics and Policy

Director of the Global Food Ethics and Policy Program


Jessica Fanzo, PhD is the Bloomberg Distinguished Professor of Global Food Policy and Ethics at the Berman Institute of Bioethics, the Bloomberg School of Public Health, and the Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) at the Johns Hopkins University in the USA. She also serves as the Director of Hopkins’ Global Food Policy and Ethics Program, and as Director of Food & Nutrition Security at the JHU Alliance for a Healthier World.  From 2017 to 2019, Jessica served as the Co-Chair of the Global Nutrition Report and the UN High Level Panel of Experts on Food Systems and Nutrition. Before coming to Hopkins, she has also held positions at Columbia University, the Earth Institute, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, the World Food Programme, Bioversity International, and the Millennium Development Goal Centre at the World Agroforestry Center in Kenya. She was the first laureate of the Carasso Foundation’s Sustainable Diets Prize in 2012 for her research on sustainable food and diets for long-term human health.
Jessica has worked as an advisor for various organizations and governments including DFAT, the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN), the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), PATH, the Scaling Up Nutrition movement (SUN), the UN Standing Committee on Nutrition (UNSCN), USAID, the World Bank, and the World Health Organization (WHO).
With twenty years of research and program experience working in the field in sub-Saharan Africa, South and East Asia, and the United States, her area of expertise focuses on the impact of transitioning food systems on healthy, environmentally sustainable and equitable diets, and more broadly on the livelihoods of people living in resource-constrained places.
Jessica has a PhD in Nutrition from the University of Arizona and completed a Stephen I. Morse postdoctoral fellowship in Immunology in the Department of Molecular Medicine at Columbia University.

Béné, C., Fanzo, J., Haddad, L., Hawkes, C., Caron, P., Vermeulen, S., Herrero, M. and Oosterveer, P., 2020. Five priorities to operationalize the EAT–Lancet Commission report. Nature Food, 1(8), pp.457-459.
Hawkes, C, Downs, S, Fox, E and Fanzo, J. (2020) Child-centered food systems: reorienting food systems towards healthy diets for children. Global Food Security. In Press
Fanzo, J., Covic, N., Dobermann, A., Henson, S., Herrero, M., Pingali, P., & Staal, S. (2020). A research vision for food systems in the 2020s: Defying the status quo. Global Food Security, 26, 100397.
Fanzo, J., Hood, A., & Davis, C. (2020). Eating our way through the Anthropocene. Physiology & Behavior, 222, 112929.
Fanzo, J., Haddad, L., McLaren, R., Marshall, Q., Davis, C., Herforth, A., ... & Miachon, L. (2020). The Food Systems Dashboard is a new tool to inform better food policy. Nature Food, 1-4.
Bene, C, Fanzo, J, Achicanoy, H, Mapes, BR, Alvarez Toro, P and Bonilla Cedrez, C (2020) What drives the (un)sustainability of our food systems? A global analysis. Plos One. 15(4): e023.
Downs, S. M., Ahmed, S., Fanzo, J., & Herforth, A. (2020). Food Environment Typology: Advancing an Expanded Definition, Framework, and Methodological Approach for Improved Characterization of Wild, Cultivated, and Built Food Environments toward Sustainable Diets. Foods, 9(4), 532.
Ghosh-Jerath, S., Kapoor, R., Singh, A., Downs, S., Barman, S., & Fanzo, J. (2020). Leveraging traditional ecological knowledge and access to nutrient-rich indigenous foods to help achieve SDG 2: An analysis of the indigenous foods of Sauria Paharias, a vulnerable tribal community in Jharkhand, India. Frontiers in Nutrition, 7, 61.
Fanzo, J., Drewnowski, A., Blumberg, J., Miller, G., Kraemer, K., & Kennedy, E. (2020). Nutrients, Foods, Diets, People: Promoting Healthy Eating. Current Developments in Nutrition.
Fanzo, J. (2020). The utilisation of wild foods in Mediterranean Tunisia: commentary on the identification and frequency of consumption of wild edible plants over a year in central Tunisia: a mixed-methods approach (Dop et al., nd). Public Health Nutrition, 23(5), 956-958.
GBD Italian Collaborators. Monasta, L., Abbafati, C., Logroscino, G., Remuzzi, G., Perico, N., Bikbov, B., ... & Ariani, F. (2019). Italy's health performance, 1990–2017: findings from the Global Burden of Disease Study 2017. The Lancet Public Health, 4(12), e645-e657.

Fanzo, J (2019) Healthy and Sustainable Diets and Food Systems: The Key to Achieving Sustainable Development Goal 2? Food Ethics. 4 (2), 159-174
Duggan, C.P., Brennan, L., Christian, P., Fanzo, J. and Ludwig, D.S., 2019. Knowledge and debate in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition: new sections, new science, and looking forward and outward. The American journal of clinical nutrition. 111(1): 1-3.
Fanzo, J. and Davis, C. (2019). Can Diets Be Healthy, Sustainable, and Equitable? Current obesity reports, pp.1-9.
Bridge Collaborative. (2019). Aligning Evidence Generation and Use Across Health, Development, and Environment. Current Opinion on Environmental Sustainability. 39: 81-93.
Ahmed, S, Downs S and Fanzo, J (2019). Advancing an Integrative Framework to Evaluate Sustainability in National Dietary Guidelines. Front. Sustain. Food Syst., 25 September 2019

Qin, Y. J., Pingault, N., Ricci, F., and Fanzo, J. (2019). Improved food environments for healthy diets and enhanced nutrition. Journal of Integrative Agriculture, 18(7): 1652-1654.
Byerlee D and Fanzo J (2019) The SDG of zero hunger 75 years on: Turning full circle on agriculture and nutrition. Global Food Security. 21: 52-59.
Ghosh-Jerath, S., Downs, S., Singh, A., Paramnik, S., Goldberg, G. and Fanzo, J. (2019) Innovative matrix for applying a food systems approach for developing interventions to address nutrient deficiencies in indigenous communities inIndia: a study protocol. BMC Public Health. 19: 944.
Shapiro, M.J., Downs, S.M., Swartz, H.J., Parker, M., Quelhas, D., Kreis, K., Kraemer, K., West, K.P. and Fanzo, J. (2019) A Systematic Review Investigating the Relation Between Animal-Source Food Consumption and Stunting in Children Aged 6–60 Months in Low and Middle-Income Countries. Advances in Nutrition.
Sinharoy, S.S. and Fanzo, J. (2019) Ethical and human rights considerations related to access to anemia diagnosis. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences.
Downs, SM, Kauai, J, Smith, S, Sackey, J and Fanzo, J. (2019). A mHealth voice messaging intervention to improve infant and young child feeding practices in Senegal. Matern. Child Nutrition. 2019 Apr 4:e12825. doi: 10.1111/mcn.12825
GBD 2017 Diet Collaborators. (2019). Health effects of dietary risks in 195 countries, 1990–2017: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2017. The Lancet. 393 (10184), 1958-1972.
Willett, W, Rockstrom, J, Loken, B, Springmann, M, Lang, T, Vermeulen, S, Garnett, T, Tilman, D, DeClerk, F, Wood, A, Jonell, M, Clark, M, Gordon, L, Fanzo, J, Hawkes, C, Zurayk, R, Rivera, J, De Vries, W, Sibanda, L, Afshin, A, Chaudhary, A, Herrero, M, Agustina, R, Branca, F, Lartey, A, Fan, S, Crona, B, Fox, E, Bignet, V, Troell, M, Lindahl, T, Singh, S, Cornell, S, Reddy, S, Narain, S, Nishtar, S and Murray, C. (2019). Our Food in the Anthropocene: The EAT-Lancet Commission on Healthy Diets from Sustainable Food Systems. The Lancet. 1-47.
Fox, E.L., Davis, C., Downs, S.M., Schultink, W. and Fanzo, J., (2019). Who is the Woman in Women's Nutrition? A Narrative Review of Evidence and Actions to Support Women's Nutrition Throughout Life. Current Developments in Nutrition. 3(1): 1-22.
Barling D and Fanzo J (Editors) (2019). Advances in Food Security and Sustainability. Volume 4. Elsevier, Cambridge MA.
Spiker, M., Ickes, S and Fanzo, J (2020) Underlying determinants of malnutrition in low- and middle-income countries and nutrition-sensitive approaches to improve nutrition. Chapter 13. In: Public Health Nutrition: Essentials for Practitioners. Pg 295.
Hawkes, C. and Fanzo, J. (2020). Health. Chapter 1. In: Healthy and Sustainable Food Systems. Edited by Mark Lawrence and Sharon Friehl. Routledge, New York, NY.
Davis C and Fanzo J (2019) An Overview of Ethical Issues in Food, Water, and Nutrition in Public Health. Chapter 47. In: Oxford Handbook of Public Health Ethics. Edited by Anna C. Mastroianni, Jeffrey P. Kahn, and Nancy E. Kass. Oxford Press UK.
Fanzo J (2019) Malnutrition, Public Health, and Ethics. Chapter 49. In: Oxford Handbook of Public Health Ethics. Edited by Anna C. Mastroianni, Jeffrey P. Kahn, and Nancy E. Kass, Oxford Press UK.
Fanzo, J (2019). Biodiversity: An Essential Natural Resource for Improving Diets and Nutrition.
Chapter 4. In: Agriculture for Improved Nutrition: Seizing the Momentum. Editors: Shenggen Fan, Sivan Yosef, and Rajul Pandya-Lorch. CABI and IFPRI, Oxfordshire, UK. Pp. 36-46.
Fanzo, J and Swartz, H (2019) Attaining a healthy and sustainable diet. Chapter 10. In: Sustainable Diets: Linking Nutrition and Food systems. Editors: Barbara Burlingame and Sandro Dernini. CABI, Oxfordshire UK. Pp. 99-112.
Fanzo J, Shawar, YR, Shyam, T, Das, S and Shiffman, J. Food System PPPs: Can they Advance Public Health and Business Goals at the Same Time? Analysis and Ideas for Moving Forward. Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN). Discussion Paper #6. Geneva, Switzerland, 2020. DOI:
Reardon, T, Tschirley, D, Liverpool-Tasie, S, Fanzo, J, Solislager, M, Sauer, C, Dhar, R, Vargas, C and Popkin B (2020). The food system transformation and it links with the underweight and the overweight/obesity burden in sub-Saharan Africa. Submitted to FAO.

FAO and WHO (2019) Summary Paper 2: The role of healthy diets in creating environmentally sustainable food systems Authors: Michael Clark, Jennie Macdiarmid, Andrew D. Jones, Janet Ranganathan, Mario Herrero and Jessica Fanzo. In:  Sustainable healthy diets – Guiding principles. Rome.
Fanzo, J (2019) Considering Ethics Along the Data Value Chain for Nutrition. In: Data in Nutrition. Sight and Life, Vol 33(1), 122-126.
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) (2019). Climate Change and Land: An IPCC Special Report on climate change, desertification, land degradation, sustainable land management, food security, and greenhouse gas fluxes in terrestrial ecosystems. Contributing Author to Chapter 5 on Food Security.
Rawe T, Antonelli M, Chatrchyan A, Clayton T, Fanzo J, Gonsalves J, Matthews A, Nierenberg D, Zurek M. 2019. Transforming food systems under climate change: Local to global policy as a catalyst for change. CCAFS Working Paper no. 271. Wageningen, the Netherlands: CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS). Available online at:
The Food Systems Dashboard Webinar. June 5, 2020. *Host
The Ethics of Food Security and Nutrition.” American Society of Nutrition Presidential Symposium. Online. June 1, 2020. *Keynote Speaker
“COVID-19: Supply Chain Disruption and Food Security – Re-Think.” College of Engineering, Qatar University. May 19, 2020 webinar. Speaker
“Eating in the Anthropocene” webinar. Center for Desert Agriculture, University of KAUST, Saudi Arabia. March 13, 2020. *Keynote speaker.
“Climate, Food Security and COVID-19.” SNF Agora Institute Conversations: The Politics and Policy of COVID-19. Baltimore/DC. May 8, 2020. *Panelist

“Why We Have Hunger Amidst Plenty.” Wallace Stegner Center 25th Annual Symposium – “Food and the Environment: Resilient and Equitable Food Security for the West.” S. J. Quinney College of Law, University of Utah. March 20, 2020. *Keynote speaker.
“Eating Our Way through the Anthropocene.” Wallace Stegner Lecture. S. J. Quinney College of Law, University of Utah. March 18, 2020. *Keynote speaker.
“Eating in the Anthropocene.” 40th Annual Huggins Science Seminar. Acadia University, Nova Scotia, Canada. March 2, 2020. *Keynote speaker.
“Making the Business Case for Nutrition.” Chatham House Workshop. London, England. January 28, 2020. Speaker
“Our Food System: A Disruptor to Climate Disruption.” The Initiative for Sustainable Energy Policy Seminar Series. Johns Hopkins SAIS. February 18, 2020. Speaker
“Food systems dashboard: How it will work.” International Food Policy Research Institute Policy Seminar. Washington DC. January 27, 2020. *Keynote speaker.
“Protecting children’s diets in the era of the Anthropocene.” Promoting Healthy Diets for Children and Adolescents in Low- and Middle-Income Countries, Global Leadership Series. SickKids Centre for Global Child Health, Toronto Canada. January 22, 2020. *Keynote speaker.
“Terminologies and conceptual frameworks.” Food Environment in the Low- and Middle-Income Context workshop. SickKids Centre for Global Child Health, Toronto Canada. January 21, 2020. Speaker
“Food as a lens to tackle the multiple burdens of malnutrition.” Health Seminar Series in the Department of Environmental Global Health, University of Florida, Gainesville FL. January 14, 2020. Speaker
“Food and Human Well Being.” Future of Food Forum at the Institute for Sustainable Food Systems, University of Florida, Gainesville FL. January 15, 2020. Panelist
The Food Environment as Key to Sustainability.” Barilla Foundation Forum. Dec 2019. Milan, Italy. Panelist
“Eating in the Anthropocene.” Food Systems Dialogues. Duke University’s World Food Policy Center, Washington DC. Dec 2019. *Keynote Speaker
“The cost and affordability of the EAT-Lancet reference diet.” Webinar with the ANH Academy. Dec 2019. *Speaker

 “World food day commemoration.” Kennedy Caucus Room, Russell Senate Office Building, Washington DC. *Keynote Speaker
“Reimagining the Global Food System.” American Society of Agronomy Crop Science Society of America. San Antonio, TX. Nov 2019. Speaker
 “Sustainability and Development Conference” University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI. October 2019. Panelist
 “Opportunities for facilitating health, equity and sustainability in food systems.” 4th Annual Foodscape Innovation meeting. American Heart Association. Crystal City, VA. September 2019. Speaker
 “A presentation of the Global Nutrition Report.” President’s Lecture, American Dietetic Association Conference. Philadelphia, PA. October 2019. Speaker
“Eating Our Way Through the Anthropocene.” Purdue University Ideas Festival, Lafayette, IN. September 2019. *Keynote Speaker
“17 Rooms.” Rockefeller Foundation and Brookings Institution, UN General Assembly Week. New York, NY. September 2019. Moderator
“Food and Land Use Coalition Grow Better Event.” UN General Assembly Week. New York, NY. September 2019. Panelist
“Strategic Dialogue: For Health and Humanity: Transitioning to a Global Plant-Based Future. Concordia Annual Summit. New York, NY. September 2019. Panelist


In the News

Eating your vegetables is easier said than done.

Jessica Fanzo quoted in Eurasia Review, 9/2

A research vision for food systems in the 2020s: Defying the status quo.

Jessica Fanzo wrote in Global Food Security, 7/21

New tool enables countries to improve their food systems.

Jessica Fanzo quoted in EcoWatch, 7/15

Finally, a one-stop shop for researching food systems data.

Jessica Fanzo cited in A Green Living blog, 6/19

Professor Jessica Fanzo Awarded COVID-19 Launchpad Grant

Professor Jessica Fanzo was awarded a COVID-19 launchpad grant by Johns Hopkins University's Alliance for a Healthier World.

Researchers outside medicine have a new focus: COVID-19.

Jessica Fanzo quoted in The Wall Street Journal, 5/27

Eating our way through the Anthropocene.

Jessica Fanzo wrote in ScienceDirect, 5/26

COVID-19 threatens to starve Africa

Jessica Fanzo wrote in Bloomberg, 4/27

Redesigning the food system for planetary health

Jessica Fanzo quoted in Nutrition Connect, 4/24

What is driving unsustainability in the food system?

Jessica Fanzo cited in Food Navigator, 4/9

Malnutrition hits the obese as well as the underfed.

Jessica Fanzo quoted on Vermont Public Radio, 12/24

Changing incentives and policies crucial to end hunger and malnutrition.

Jessica Fanzo interviewed for Thomson Reuters Foundation, 10/16

After 75 years, agriculture and nutrition meet again.

Jessica Fanzo wrote for International Food Policy Research Institute, 7/31

If you're poor in America, you can be both overweight and hungry.

Jessica Fanzo wrote in Bloomberg Opinion, 7/17

Who will feed the world’s cities? The rural-urban convergence.

Jessica Fanzo wrote in International Affairs Forum, 6/11

Ethical and human rights considerations related to access to anemia diagnosis.

Jessica Fanzo wrote in the Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 6/3

Oh, the places you'll goat!

Jessica Fanzo interviewed on We All Gotta Eat podcast, 4/24

Tying the knot: An interdisciplinary approach to understanding the human right to adequate nutrition.

Jessica Fanzo wrote for Columbia Center on Sustainable Investment, 3/18

Protein of the future.

Jessica Fanzo quoted in Johns Hopkins HUB, 3/18

FOLU Champions.

Jessica Fanzo interviewed in Food and Land Use Coalition blog, 2/15