Panel discussion: 'Sustainable food: creating a food system for healthy people and planet'

Past Event

22 February 2023, 5:00pm - 6:30pm

Oxford Martin School & Online
34 Broad Street (corner of Holywell and Catte Streets), Oxford, OX1 3BD

Event Recording:

Food systems are a major driver of global biodiversity loss, deforestation, water scarcity and pollution, and pesticide toxicity.

Food production also generates greenhouse gas emissions that are a major contributor to climate change. With 1/3 of the earth’s land already used for agriculture and a growing global population, changes to both food production systems and consumption (on the part of organisations and individuals) are essential for a sustainable future where everyone has access to healthy food.

Join our panel, Dr Michael Clark, Oxford Martin Programme on Biodiversity & Society; Dr Sasha Gennet, The Nature Conservancy; Dr Joseph Poore, Oxford Martin Programme on Food Sustainability Analytics & Dr Tara Garnett (Chair), Table, as they discuss how sustainability in agriculture, food labelling, diet changes, and policy can help can create a food system that not only provides enough food, but keeps us and the planet healthy.

This event was part of the Oxford Green Action Week, a week full of exciting events that empower and celebrate environmental action. For more information:

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Clark Michael

Dr Michael Clark
Oxford Martin Fellow, Oxford Martin Programme on Biodiversity & Society

Michael Clark is a Senior Researcher of Sustainable Food Solutions at the University of Oxford. He is a founding and current director of the Smith School’s Sustainable Food Solutions Programme, and is also a member of the Livestock, Environment, and People programme, the Oxford Martin School Biodiversity and Society Programme, the Oxford Martin School AGILE initiative, and the Leverhulme Centre for Nature Recovery.

Mike’s research examines the role of food and food systems in meeting the Triple Challenge of climate, biodiversity, and human wellbeing. His work combines quantitative methods (big data, food system modeling) with behavioral experiments (e.g. on ecolabelling), working to identify the capacity for food systems to transform and meet targets on environment and human wellbeing. His work has been published in Nature, Science, PNAS, BMJ, and the Lancet, and has been featured in media around the world, including Financial Times, BBC, The Guardian, and New Scientist.

Before joining the Smith School, Mike was a researcher at Oxford’s Nuffield Department of Population Health, working on the Livestock, Environment, and People program. He did his PhD at the University of Minnesota, focusing on the environmental impacts of food systems.

Gennet Sasha

Dr Sasha Gennet
Oxford Martin Visiting Fellow & Fellow, The Nature Conservancy

Sasha Gennet has over 25 years of experience in natural resources management, research, planning, and policy in the public and private sectors, including 15 years with The Nature Conservancy as a scientist and director for sustainable ranching and agriculture programs in the US. She is currently a visiting fellow at the Oxford Martin School writing a university-level textbook on food and the environment.

Dr Gennet earned her undergraduate degree from Yale University, a M.S. in Range Management, and Ph.D. in Ecosystem Sciences from the University of California, Berkeley.

Poore Joseph

Dr Joseph Poore
Director, Oxford Martin Programme on Food Sustainability Analytics

Joseph’s research seeks to increase our understanding of the environmental impacts of agriculture and create solutions to mitigate these impacts.

He is currently building the HESTIA platform as part of the Oxford Martin Programme on Food Sustainability Analytics. HESTIA provides data and models that allow us to better understand the environmental impacts of different agricultural products and production practices. The platform aims to make significant progress on sharing the latest agronomic science with food producers globally, supporting science based reductions in food’s environmental impacts.

Joseph earned his MA and M.Phil in Land Economy from the University of Cambridge. He then worked in management consulting in London for four years. Following that he completed his D.Phil in Biology from the University of Oxford.

Garnett Tara 2020

Dr Tara Garnett (Chair)
Director, TABLE

Tara is the Director of Table, which sets out the evidence, assumptions, and values underpinning different viewpoints on food systems controversies. Table is a collaboration between the University of Oxford, Wageningen University & Research and the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences.

Her work centres on the interactions among food, climate, health and broader sustainability issues; she has a particular interest in livestock as a sector where many of these converge. She is also interested in how knowledge is communicated to and interpreted by policy makers, civil society organisations and industry, and in the values that these different stakeholders bring to food problems and possible solutions.

Tara is based at the Environmental Change Institute in the School of Geography and the Environment, is a fellow of the Oxford Martin School and is co-investigator on the Wellcome Trust-funded Livestock, Environment and People (LEAP) project.