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Grappling with complex realities: designing food interventions to work in context?
The degree to which interventions to influence the foods people eat are effective, typically depends on their fit to the context in which they are delivered and the population they target. Contexts modify the impact of interventions, and the target population - their food-related practices and other cultural and social norms and personal factors – influence if they adopt them or not. If they are to work, interventions – including policies – need to be designed based on an understanding of both. In her Food Thinkers talk, Dr Meena Daivadanam will provide examples of how interventions can be re-shaped and re-sized to be more effective in context and for the target population. She will talk about how to filter the hard-scientific evidence with numbers and percentages through appropriate context and target population lenses so interventions can be re-shaped and re-sized into different strategies - converting recommended servings of fruits and vegetables into local measures, or gamifying healthy or unhealthy foods. During this translation, there is always some loss in terms of details or accuracy and some gain in terms of fit or applicability. Meena will talk about the role of formative research in aiding this process: how are food decisions made; who makes them; what is good food? Obtaining these answers require the active participation of, or consultation with relevant stakeholders, including members of the target population. She will present some examples from research projects in India, Sweden and Sub-Saharan Africa (Uganda and South Africa), where contexts shaped the interventions and interventions were in turn re-shaped to fit the population it was intended for.

Sep 24, 2020 05:15 PM in London

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