The Center for Food Studies of The American University of Rome is the institutional home for the promotion of research and both academic and cultural activities involving AUR faculty, students and alumni interested in and working on food-related subjects.
- How do we affect the Earth’s resources with our food choices?
- How does food production affect climate change and, conversely, what is the impact of climate change on agricultural production?
- Why are there still 870 million of people hungry and 1.4 billion people who are overweight and obese?
- How to achieve a more sustainable and socially just food system?
These are just a few of the questions addressed through diverse scholarly approaches to the study of food; studies that are inevitably cross-disciplinary given the multiple connections of food with the physical world of production, its sustainability, its economic and political dimensions and also its connections to the social, cultural and nutritional aspects of consumption.
Rome is the food hub of the world; the center for the critical issues of worldwide scope surrounding food, sustainability of the natural resource base and global food security with its three U.N. agencies (Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, International Fund for Agricultural Development and World Food Programme) and with Bioversity International, a member of the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research. (CGIAR). Furthermore, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) is located in Parma, not far from Rome.
From Rome, students and scholars can explore and appreciate the food culture, production, processing and variety of markets that characterize Italy, as part of the European Union policies and programs. In Rome and throughout Italy, students can meet members of alternative civic food networks, including the Slow Food Movement, and can experience rural, agro- and culinary tourism.
The aims of the Center are
- To provide a forum in English for an intercultural understanding of food, from production to consumption.
- To promote and share research in food-related topics within the University and with other institutions in Italy, including the Rome-based U.N. and CGIAR international organizations, the European Food Safety Authority and the active civic food networks.
- To foster internships with non-profit organizations involved in food.
- To promote and share teaching and experiential learning in the interdisciplinary topic of food.