Annette Desmarais

Canada Research Chair in Human Rights, Social Justice and Food Sovereignty

Tier 2 - 2017-11-01
University of Manitoba
Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council


Research involves

Examining the challenges involved in building socially just and environmentally sustainable food systems that are based on food sovereignty.

Research relevance

This research will improve understanding about how alternative food systems can help feed the world and cool the planet.

Food Sovereignty: Building Food Systems Based on Human Rights and Social Justice

In the face of ongoing global food and environmental crises, and growing concerns that industrially made foods are leading to health problems, researchers are investigating the potential of sustainable, alternative food systems.

Dr. Annette Desmarais, Canada Research Chair in Human Rights, Social Justice and Food Sovereignty, is focusing her research on food sovereignty—an approach that is gaining momentum internationally. Food sovereignty is grounded in people’s right to democratically define and control their own food systems in ways that allow them to make decisions about what food is grown, where and how it is grown, who produces it, and on what scale.    

Desmarais is exploring food sovereignty in a number of countries. Her research involves linking human rights and social justice with issues of access to and control over food-producing resources such as land, water and seeds. Desmarais is also investigating how food sovereignty may contribute to socially just, environmentally sustainable production of safe, healthy food, as well as to fair food markets and to viable livelihoods for farmers.

Desmarais’ research will contribute to current debates about international development approaches and public policies geared towards helping eradicate rural poverty, building vibrant rural communities, and enhancing local, national and global food security.