Professor Jennie Macdiarmid
BSc (Hons), PhD
Interim Director, Professor in Sustainable Nutrition and Health
Jennie is a Professor of Sustainable Nutrition and Health and the Interim Director of interdisciplinary challenge Health, Nutrition and Well-being. She gained a BSc (Hons) in Nutrition and Food Science from the University of Surrey, during which she spent a year working at the CSIRO research laboratories in Melbourne, Australia. After graduating she worked as a research assistant at the Institute of Food Research (Norwich) and the University of Dundee (Psychology dept) investigating chocolate and eating behaviours. In 1997 she completed her PhD at the University of Leeds (Psychology), after which she spent 18 months working for the International Obesity Task Force in Aberdeen. Before joining the Rowett Institute at the University of Aberdeen in 2006, she worked in department of environmental and occupational health in the medical school. Her research focuses on food and nutrition security and the impact of diets on climate change and land use. This includes understanding how to change dietary habits to be healthier and more environmentally sustainable.
- BSc Nutrition and Food Science1991 - University of Surrey
- PhD Nutrition and Psychology1997 - University of Leeds
Memberships and Affiliations
- Internal Memberships
School of Medicine, Medical Science and Nutrition Research Committee
University of Aberdeen Senate committeee (2017-2020)
- External Memberships
FAO/WHO International Science Committee: UN dietary guiding principles for sustainable and healthy diets (2019-20)
International Union of Nutritional Sciences Task Force on Sustainable Diets (2018- present)
Scientific committee British Nutrition Foundation (2020- present)
FAO/WHO International Consultation Group on Sustainable and Healthy Diets (2018-2019)
BBSRC Global Food Security Science Advisory Group, UK (2017-2020)
BBSRC Public Panel Steering group, UK (2014-2016)
Scientific Committee for International Sustainable Food Systems and Diets (Daniel et Nina Carasso Foundation, France) (2012-2017)
The food system and climate change: are plant-based diets becoming unhealthy and less environmentally sustainable?Proceedings of the Nutrition SocietyContributions to Journals: Articles
The impact of climate and societal change on food and nutrition security: a case study of MalawiFood and Energy Security, vol. 10, no. 3, e290Contributions to Journals: Articles
How important is healthiness, carbon footprint and meat content when purchasing a ready meal?: Evidence from a non-hypothetical discrete choice experimentJournal of Cleaner Production, vol. 282, 124510Contributions to Journals: Articles
Food and Nutrition Security under Global Trade: A relation-driven agent-based global trade modelRoyal Society Open Science, vol. 8, no. 1, 201587Contributions to Journals: Articles
The role of healthy diets in environmentally sustainable food systemsFood & Nutrition Bulletin, vol. 41, no. 2_suppl, pp. S31-S58Contributions to Journals: Articles
Prizes and Awards
Excellence award: Principal's Prize for Research & Engagement in Interdisciplinary Research Award (2021).
Principal’s Prize for Public Engagement with Research in Biomedical Sciences Awarded by the University of Aberdeen and Wellcome Trust (2015).
Food and nutrition security
Food systems and sustainable diets.
Dietary behaviours, habits and food choices.
Nutrition and Health
Key research projects:
1. Dietary behaviours and habits in the context of shifting to sustainable diets with complex social systems: agent-based modelling (RESAS Scottish Government funding).
2. DEVIL - Delivering Food Security on Limited Land (Belmont Forum/FACCE-JPI project).
3. AFRICAP - Agriculture and Food-Systems resilience: increasing capacity and advising policy (GCRF funded).
4. Sustainable and Healthy diets in India (SAHDI) Wellcome Trust.
5. Sustainable and Healthy Food Systems (SHEFS), UK, India, South Africa Wellcome Trust
6. Young people’s views about climate change and eating less meat. Pump-priming Interdisciplinary Award.
7. Food insecurity and dietary diversity among low-income migrant workers affected by COVID-19 in India. GCRF pump-priming Award.
Previous research areas:
Obesity and policy & behaviours
Eating behaviour and chocolate addiction
Occuptional health (long term health impact of diving)
BBC (Scotland) Disclosure: climate change documentary (2021)
Café Med “The route to healthy and environmentally-friendly diets”
Café Controversial “Buy one, throw one out” (public talk)
CPD: using research in ‘real life’.
University of Leeds, UK.
London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, UK.
Kings College London, UK.
James Hutton Institute, Aberdeen, UK
International collaboration, including USA, Australia, Brazil, India, Switzerland, South Africa, Malawi, Zambia, Tanzania.
Ndashe Kapulu (2019-present) Soy transition and implications for agri-food systems in Zambia.
Lucy Sam (2016-present) Investigation of domestic food practices and routines, and their determinants.
Charlotte Hall (2014-2019) Environmental consequences of delivering food security.
Renaud Heckle (2014-2019) Constraints and opportunities to integrate beekeeping into mixed farming in Sub-Saharan countries.
Henri de Ruiter (2013- 2017) Implications of meeting a healthy diet for sustainable land use.
Liam McMorrow (2012-2018) An economic analysis of food choice and its associations with health inequalities.
Tania Griffin (2007-2011) SNAK: educational intervention to improve the knowledge of non-milk extrinsic sugars and energy balance among children aged 11-12 years.
Funding and Grants
University of Aberdeen pump-priming Interdisciplinary Award (2021) Young people’s views about climate change and eating less meat. £7K.
University/GCRF pump-priming award (2020-21). Food insecurity and dietary diversity among low-income migrant workers affected by COVID-19 in India. £50K (£87K FEC).
GCRF (2018-2023) AFRICAP - Agricultural and Food-system Resilience: Increasing Capacity and Advising Policy. University Leeds, University of Aberdeen, Chatham House, FANRPAN, Met Office
Scottish Government (Rural and Environment Research Analysis Directorate) (2017-22) Programme of research on sustainable diets.
Wellcome Trust (2017-2019) Sustainable and Healthy Food Systems (SHEFS). London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, University of Aberdeen.
Belmont Forum/FACCE-JPI International Collaborative Research Funding (2015-2019). DEVIL (Delivering Food Security on Limited Land), International multidisciplinary partnership (8 countries). Led by University of Aberdeen.
National Nutrition Security: Daniel and Nicol Carasso Foundation. Nutrition security and international trade in the UK. €10K.
Wellcome Trust (2014-16) Sustainable and healthy diets in India. London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, University of Aberdeen.
Scottish Government (2014) Guidance for caterers on children’s menus. Aberdeen University. £9,791.
Food Standards Agency Scotland (2012-13) Estimate of the greenhouse gas emissions of the Eatwell week. Aberdeen University.
WWF-UK (2010) Livewell project: A balance of healthy and sustainable food choices. University of Aberdeen.
Food Standards Agency Scotland (2010-2011). Survey of diet, influences on food choices and eating practices among children in Scotland in 2010. University of Aberdeen
Food Standards Agency Scotland (2007-2008) Secondary Analysis of the Survey of Sugar Intake among Children in Scotland. University of Aberdeen.
Scottish Government (Rural and Environment Research Analysis Directorate) (2009-12) Environmental Determinants of Public Health in Scotland (EDPHiS) Obesity case study. Unversity of Aberdeen, University of Glasgow.
Health and Safety Executive (2004-5) Further investigation of the possible musculoskeletal, cognitive deficit and hearing deficit due to welding in divers identified in the ELTHI Diving study. Aberdeen University.
Health and Safety Executive (2003) Identification of factors affecting quality of life in divers and offshore workers. University of Aberdeen.
Health and Safety Executive (2002) Attitudes to safety culture among divers and offshore work. University of Aberdeen.
MSc course: Sustainable Nutrition and Global Food Systems
Lecture on the following courses:
MSc Human Nutrition & Metabolism
MSc Global Health
MSc Global Nutrition
Fundamentals of Research Design
Sixth Century Course on World Food
MSc Nutrition (University of Glasgow)
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Social, temporal and situational influences on meat consumption in the UK populationAppetite, vol. 138, pp. 1-9Contributions to Journals: Articles
Healthy and sustainable diets that meet greenhouse gas emission reduction targets and are affordable for different income groups in the UKPublic Health Nutrition, vol. 22, no. 8, pp. 1503-1517Contributions to Journals: Articles
The relationship between forest cover and diet quality: a case study of rural southern MalawiFood Security, vol. 11, no. 3, pp. 635-650Contributions to Journals: Articles
Corrigendum to “Greenhouse gas emissions from agricultural food production to supply Indian diets: Implications for climate change mitigation” [Agric. Ecosyst. Environ. 237 (2017) 234–241](S0167880916306065)(10.1016/j.agee.2016.12.024)Agriculture, Ecosystems and Environment, vol. 272, pp. 83-85Contributions to Journals: Comments and Debates
Value-elicitation and value-formation properties of discrete choice experiment and experimental auctionsEuropean Review of Agricultural Economics, vol. 46, no. 1, pp. 3-27Contributions to Journals: Articles
Greenhouse gas emissions and water footprints of typical dietary patterns in IndiaScience of the Total Environment, vol. 643, pp. 1411-1418Contributions to Journals: Articles
Attitudes towards, and purchasing of, Scottish beef and beef products in Scotland: A short communicationMeat Science, vol. 145, pp. 150-153Contributions to Journals: Articles
Relationship between pro-environmental attitudes and behaviour and dietary intake patternsSustainable Production and Consumption, vol. 16, pp. 216-226Contributions to Journals: Articles
Moving beyond calories and protein: Micronutrient assessment of UK diets and land useGlobal Environmental Change, vol. 52, pp. 108-116Contributions to Journals: Articles
Effect of increasing fruit and vegetable intake by dietary intervention on nutritional biomarkers and attitudes to dietary change: a randomised trialEuropean Journal of Nutrition, vol. 57, no. 5, pp. 1855-1872Contributions to Journals: Articles