Thomas Marchione Award

The Thomas Marchione Food-as-a-Human-Right Student Award

This annual award will be awarded to a student whose work continues and expands Dr. Marchione’s efforts toward food justice, food security and access, and most directly, food as a human right. Students applying for this award should demonstrate active and productive engagement with food security and food sovereignty issues. The award can be in recognition of exemplary work already accomplished, in progress, or for proposed work in the field of food as a human right and the social justice aspects of food systems.  It should show concern for the poor and undernourished and a willingness to take an active role in working on behalf of food sovereignty.  Ideally, it would be given to those who are trying to work, in Dr. Marchione’s words, on “the best and more sustainable approaches to fulfill the right to food.”  Given Dr. Marchione’s legacy, preference will be given to proposals from students actively engaged in the central issues that animated his career as a scholar-activist.

The award may be a research prize (for proposed or in-process research) or a research award (for completed research).  The award will be presented to the awardee at the SAFN annual business meeting at the AAA annual meeting. The winner will be awarded a cash prize ($750) and a one -year membership to the AAA and SAFN.

Criteria and Eligibility: This award recognizes valuable research on topics including food security, food justice and/or the right to food in both international and domestic contexts. Any current graduate (MA, MS or PhD) student in any field of study who will have completed their coursework and research proposal by deadline for submission is eligible. Papers can be submitted for publication at the time of their submission to the Marchione award, but they cannot be in the revision process or accepted for publication.

Deadline for Applications: Deadline June 15, 2023

Application Process: Send all application materials and direct inquiries to the Society for the Anthropology of Food and Nutrition (SAFN) Award Committee, Dr. Ryan Adams ( Include “Thomas Marchione Award” in the subject line. The four-page double-spaced proposal has the following elements:

  1. Indicate whether you are applying for the Marchione Prize (for research that has not yet started or is ongoing), or the Marchione Award (for research that is completed).
  2. Statement of problem/research question with a clear statement of how this research addresses questions of food security, food justice or food as a human right (up to one page).
  3. Literature review where the applicant articulates how his/her work/research builds on and advances Dr. Marchione’s work on food justice, food as human right, and food security (see articles cited below). (up to one page)
  4. Clear articulation of the research strategy, design, methods, and analysis plan. Statement of applicant’s preparation for the proposed research including language training, research training and previous experience, program description and mentor name and contact information. Include a brief budget and budget justification indicating how the funds will be used. (up to one and one-half pages)
  5. Statement of how this award and the associated research will develop the applicant’s career goals. (up to one-half page)
  6. Student’s Curriculum Vitae.

Review of Submissions

The review committee will review all submissions and rate them on the following points of Dr. Marchione’s mission regarding food security, food justice and food as a human right: (35 total possible points).

  1. Fidelity to the mission of Dr. Marchione toward food as a human right. (10 points);
  2. Coherence of the argument and the value of the proposed or completed research. (10 points);
  3. Coherence of research design. (10 points);
  4. Coherence of the student’s preparation and how the research will contribute to future career plans (5 points).

The following works may be consulted for additional information:

Beuchelt, Tina and Detlef Virchow. 2012. Food Sovereignty or the human right to adequate food: which concept serves better as international development policy for global hunger and poverty reduction?  Agriculture and Human Values.  29: 259-273.

Marchione, Thomas J. 1996. The right to food in the post-Cold War era. Food Policy 21, 83-102.

Marchione, Thomas J. (Ed.). 1999. Scaling Up Scaling Down: Overcoming Malnutrition in Developing Countries. Amsterdam: Gordon and Breach

Messer, Ellen, Marc J. Cohen, and Thomas Marchione. 2001. Conflict: A Cause and Effect of Hunger.  ECSP Report, Issue 7.

Recent Award Winners:


Mecca Burris (Indiana University) Investigating the relationship between rural environments characterized by industrial agriculture and the development of girls in rural Costa Rica.


Ileana Diaz (University of Waterloo) Navigating Food Futures: Post-Disaster Food Sovereignty in Puerto Rico.


Gifty Dzorka (University of Manitoba) Corporate Agricultural Production, Smallholder Farming and the Sustainability of Food Systems in Ghana.


Keitlyn Alcantara (Vanderbilt University) Research using dietary isotopes to explore how food access shaped Tlaxcalteca (Aztec) capacities for imperial resistance.


Miguel Cuj (Vanderbilt University), Violence, Nutrition, and Health Issues: Maya Memories in Guatemala.


Paula Fernandez-Wulff (UC Louvain, Belgium), Harnessing Local Food Policies for the Right to Food.


Jessie Mazar (University of Vermont), Issues of food access and food security for Latino/a migrant farm workers in Vermont’s dairy industry.