Karl Zimmerer

Professor of Geography
Pennsylvania State University (USA)

Project : Food and Nutrition Interactions with Agrobiodiversity
Fellowship dates: 01/09/2022 – 30/06/2023

Llinersy Uranga-Piña

Professor of Theoretical Physics
University of Havana (Cuba)

Project : Accurate quantum dynamics of molecules and reactions in the Earth’s atmosphere
Fellowship dates: 01/09/2022 – 30/06/2023

Eduardo Somarriba

Professor of Tropical Agroforestry
Center for Tropical Agriculture Research and Education (Costa Rica)

Project: The optimal design of coffee and cocoa agroforestry systems

Fellowship dates: 01/09/2022 – 30/06/2023

Brian Dowd-Uribe

Associate Professor in Human Geography
University of San Francisco (USA)

Project: Innovating Success in Africa: How power, knowledge production and communications project GM crop promise amidst lackluster results

Fellowship dates: 01/09/2022 – 30/06/2023

Bibiana Bilbao

Full Professor of Environmental Studies
Simón Bolívar University (Venezuela)

Project: Fire management strategies in Latin America: New challenges and opportunities for policymakers in changing climate scenarios

Fellowship dates: 01/09/2022 – 30/06/2023

Raina Plowright

Professor of Disease Ecology
Cornell University (USA)

Project: Proactive strategies to prevent pandemics

Fellowship dates: 01/09/2022 – 28/02/2023

Craig Goergen

Leslie A. Geddes Associate Professor of Biomedical Engineering
Purdue University (USA)

Project: Retrospectively gated multispectral 4D photoacoustic cardiac and brain imaging

Fellowship dates: 14/03/2022 – 15/07/2022

Marcelo Lorenzo

Senior Researcher in Biology
Oswaldo Cruz Foundation (Brazil)

Project: On the track of a tool for sustainable Chagas control

Fellowship dates: 14/02/2022 – 31/07/2022

Kazem Zibara

Professor of Genetics
Lebanese University (Lebanon)

Project: The serine protease inhibitor SPINK2 as a prognostic and therapeutic target in acute myeloid leukemia

Fellowship dates: 24/01/2022 – 24/07/2022

Kateryna Makova

Pentz Professor of biology
Pennsylvania State University(USA)

Project: Non-B DNA

Fellowship dates: 16/09/2021 – 15/09/2022

Anton Nekrutenko

Professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Pennsylvania State University (USA)

Project: Developing a global analysis platform for microbial genetics

Fellowship dates: 6/09/2021 – 15/07/2022

William Moseley

DeWitt Wallace Professor of Geography
Macalester College (USA)

Project: A Geographic Revolution: Prioritizing Food Access and Agroecology in African Development

Fellowship dates: 01/09/2021 – 31/12/2021

Roel Plant

Adjunct Professor of Landscapes and Ecosystems Geography
University of Technology Sydney (Australia)

Project:Tackling Peri-Urban Land Use Change: Landscape approaches for sustainable peri-urban land transitions

Fellowship dates: 19/04/2021 – 19/02/2022

Gaukhar Konuspayeva

Professor of Biochemistry
Al-Farabi Kazakh National University (Kazakhstan)

Project: Camel milk technology and markets: a new frontier for sustainable food systems in the 21st century

Fellowship dates: 06/04/2021 – 06/02/2022

Prisca Mugabe 

Deputy Dean & Associate Professor of Rangeland Ecology and Animal Production
University of Zimbabwe (Zimbabwe)

Project: Evaluating and foreseeing impact of agricultural & conservation science in partnership for sustainable social-ecological systems’

Fellowship dates: 01/04/2021 – 30/06/2021

Ederson Jesus

Researcher Investigator on Soil Microbiology
EMBRAPA (Brazil)

Project: A tale of symbiosis: Unveiling the interaction between the common bean and its rhizobial symbionts

Fellowship dates: 01/02/2021 – 31/12/2021

Gabriela Litre

Associate Researcher on Global Environmental Change and Public Policies
University of Brasilia (Brazil)

Project: Potentialities and Limits of Knowledge Co- Production for the Equitable Internalization of the Sustainable Development Goals: An Analysis of Brazil’s Observatory of the Dynamics between Societies and Environments through a Nexus+ Perspective

Fellowship dates: 01/09/2020 – 30/08/2021

Margreet Zwarteveen

Professor of Water Governance
UNESCO-IHE Delft Institute for Water Education (The Netherlands)

Project: Caring water practices and practicing water care: Mobilizing STS and decolonial studies’ insights to energize transdisciplinary collaborations in support of transformations to sustainability

Fellowship dates: 16/09/2021 – 15/07/2022

Myrtille Lacoste

Adjunct Research Fellow in Agricultural Systems
Curtin University (Australia)

Project: Engaging farmers around data to drive practice change: the role of collaborative on-farm experimentation to support the agro-ecological transition with digital technologies

Fellowship dates: 01/09/2021 – 30/06/2022

2020-2021 COHORT

‘Fake news or weak science? Implications for sustainable development transitions in the agri-food, environmental and health areas’

Julio Amador

Research Fellow in Data Science
Imperial College London (The United Kingdom)

Project: Why does people fall for COVID-related misinformation?

Fellowship dates: 11/01/2021 – 30/06/2021

Christophe Béné

Senior Researcher on Policy Analysis
International Center for Tropical Agriculture – CIAT (Colombia)

Project:Problem framing, political economy of knowledge and science narratives around food system transformation

Fellowship dates: 11/01/2021 – 30/06/2021

Thaura Ghneim-Herrera

Professor in Plant Biology
ICESI University (Colombia)

Project:Towards an integrative strategy for tackling negative framing, misinformation, and fake news around genetic innovation in agri-food systems: a roadmap for Colombia

Fellowship dates: 11/01/2021 – 30/06/2021

Facundo Tabbita

Researcher in Agronomic Science
National Agricultural Technology Institute – INTA (Argentina)

Project: Scientific editing of fake news: multidisciplinary study of genome editing in the agri-food, environmental and health sectors

Fellowship dates: 11/01/2021 – 30/06/2021

Mahama Tawat

Research Associate in Comparative Politics
Institute for Research, Socio-Economic Development and Communication – IRESCO (Cameroon)

Project: Fake News and the Covid-19 Pandemic. A Study of Practices and Sociopolitical Implications in Cameroon

Fellowship dates: 11/01/2021 – 30/06/2021


At what level should circularity of food systems be organized: local or global?’

Neli Aparecida de Mello-Théry

Geographer and Professor of Sustainable Developmen
University of São Paulo

Habiba Bouhamed Chaabouni

Professor of Medical Genetics
University of Tunis-El Manar

Philippe Mayaud

Professor of Infectious Diseases and Reproductive Health
London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine

John R. Porter

Emeritus Professor of Climate Change and Food Security
University of Copenhagen

Martin Van Ittersum

Professor in Plant Production Systems
Wageningen University and Research

“Socio-ecological reshaping of European Cities and Metropolitan Areas”            

Fellowship dates:04/10/2021 – 08/10/2021


Report from the group on its stay at MAK’IT

Current land use and infrastructure in cities often reflects the development priorities of the past. Several arising environmental problems regarding the quality of air, water, and biodiversity of and in urban areas have revealed the need for functioning ecological processes turned towards societal well-being. Additionally, advancing climate change, continuous socio-economic growth of large urban centers and related life-style changes and mobility needs place new demands on the use and functionality of urban space and infrastructures. Urban greenery is also becoming a critical feature with a redefinition and amplification of its functionality in urban areas. With a number of initiatives, strategies and goal-settings (e.g. EU Biodiversity Strategy, EU Green Infrastructure Strategy, EU Urban Agenda, Nature-based Solutions Initiative) the European Commission is promoting the establishment of a coherent network of blue-green infrastructure in urban areas across EU countries. The expectations are very high. Conceptual groundwork and pilot measure have provided practical insights, but extraordinary design and implementation challenges remain. Our proposal aims at socio-ecological rethinking of cities beyond the current frontiers of knowledge (technical, policy and transformative) and at addressing societal challenges with highly innovative integrated ideas around three main research priorities: (i) cross-scale upscaling strategies, (ii) multi-functionality and (iii) cross-actor cost-benefit sharing and trade-off negotiations.

Our approach is based on an innovative connection of research foci and case study examples (Rhine-Main Metropolitan Region – Green Infrastructure Network, Lisbon – Green roofs, Barcelona – Vertical gardening) which have not yet been thought and explored together. We will invite relevant networks such as Local Governments for Sustainability (ICLEI) or professional associations to participate in our meetings and discussions.

A specific webpage, policy briefs, peer-reviewed synthesis publications, a joint project proposal elaboration (e.g. for EU Green Deal or EU BiodivERsA calls) and a special session at a relevant international conference are some of the deliverables we expect to develop in order to document and disseminate the network’s outputs to academic scholars and stakeholders outside academia.

After their stay at MAK’IT, the team will be hosted by the Institutes for Advanced Studies in Budapest (IAS CEU), Paris, Uppsala (SCAS), Turin (Scienza Nuova) and Bielefeld (ZiF).

Joechen Hack (PI)

Professor for Ecological Engineering
Technical University of Darmstadt (Germany)

Maria Manso

Architect & Postdoctoral Researcher in Civil Engineering
University of Lisbon (Portugal)

Rieke Hansen

Professor for Open Space and Ecological Urban Design
Geisenheim University (Germany)

Andrea Nóblega Carriquiry

PhD Candidate in Geography
Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (Spain)

“Moving beyond traditional methods of identifying and overcoming negative attitudes towards vaccinations (ACTION team)”   

Fellowship dates: 20/09/2021 – 24/09/2021

The ACTION project aims to tackle the spread of anti-vaccination messages both in physical interactions (for example within networks like parents’ unions) and in the web (for example in social media and web forums). The team will liaise with local researchers and experts who will help them (a) make a critical review of the literature and of relevant policy documents including those available through the stakeholder (WHO Europe) during year 1; (b)  critically discuss findings from Case Studies conducted at the team members’ institutions, including interviews with journalists and academics/researchers, during years 2 and 3; and (c) develop a policy document that will translate research evidence into policy proposals for dissemination to WHO Europe country-members and write-up funding applications to ensure that the team will be active after the end of the CAT funding. The stakeholder representative will be advising on translating evidence into a policy document.

The evidence to be discussed from the Case Studies (supported by external funders) are related to (a) understanding how attitudes of young people towards vaccination are built from different information sources, both on- and off-line using a mixed methods approach interviewing and surveying students in Bordeaux, France; (b) understanding how participants in a virtual online network spread vaccination-related attitudes (social contagion) using funding established at the University of Cyprus and (c) exploring innovative methods to assess social contagion of vaccination attitudes using Computer Agent-Based Modelling with simulations at the University of Cadiz. Pathways to action are also discussed.

The ACTION team is funded under the Constructive Advanced Thinking (CAT) scheme and will be meeting twice a year until end of 2022 at the following Institutes of Advanced Studies: SCAS (Uppsala), IIAS (Jerusalem), MAK’IT (Montpellier) and Scienza Nuoa (Turin).

Angelos Kassianos (PI)

Senior Research Fellow in Health Behavioural Science / Researcher in Psychology and Computer Science
University College London (the United Kingdom) / University of Cyprus (Cyprus)

Antonio Rojas García

Postdoctoral Researcher in Public Health
Imperial College London (the United Kingdom)

Ilaria Montagni

Researcher-Lecturer in Health Communication
University of Bordeaux (France)

Javier Alvarez-Galvez

Ramon y Cajal Senior Research Fellow in Health Computational Sociology
University of Cadiz (Spain)

Ourania Kolokotroni

Pediatrician & Researcher in Epidemiology and Public Health
Cyprus University of Technology (Cyprus))

Sandro Lima

Political journalist (Brazil)

Fellowship dates: 11/01/2021 – 30/06/2021