This cluster brings together scholars who engage in the study of food and its social, political, environmental and economic meanings shaped by local contexts. [For an overview of their events click here]

Vision and Scope

Food is an important part of everyone’s daily life, both shaping and manifesting social relations, including expressions of identity and the execution of power. Food is also an inherent point of interaction between humans and nature. Foodscapes represent the contexts in which food is produced, distributed, acquired and consumed, and present fascinating settings to study the structures of our society in general and the role of food in particular. Performing critical food studies, this cluster discusses the social, political and economic meanings of food and how these are embedded in the way we shape our society. This way we aim to contribute to a more sustainable, healthy and just food system.

Central research interests of current members: food sharing, diverse food economies, food aid, community food initiatives, food planning, gendered food roles, home-growing and gardening.

Activities: We meet on a monthly basis. During each session we exchange news about our work, discuss one or two scientific papers, and workshop the work of one of our members. We also organize seminars (open to all), during which we invite an inspiring speaker and organize a discussion afterwards. A few times a year we visit innovative organizations in the field. We are open to any suggestions and initiatives for other activities.

Outcomes: The discussions and workshops in this cluster’s meetings have contributed to a successful PhD proposal, several (jointly written) publications and two conference sessions (at Dag van Sociologie, and RGS-IBG conference).

Interested in joining? Please contact us!

Contact persons

Thirza Andriessen (CHL/RSO),
Yi Ling Hung (RSO),


Thirza Andriessen (CHL/RSO)

Paul de Graaf(RSO)

Hilje van der Horst (CHL)

Oona Morrow (RSO): diverse food economies, urban food commons, gender and food work, food sharing

Nanako Nakamura (CHL)

Chizu Sato (CHL)

Lucie Sovova (RSO): diverse (food) economies, food self-provisioning, urban gardens, degrowth

Esther Veen (RSO): urban green spaces, community gardening, food sharing, social cohesion, health

Anke de Vrieze (RSO): urban agriculture, urban food policy, diverse (food) economies, arts-based methods

Han Wiskerke (RSO)