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RESEARCHERS

Who we are
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Wim van Daele

Wim Van Daele is the PI on the EATWELL project and is an Associate Professor at the Department of Nutrition and Public Health at the University of Agder. He has a background in social anthropology and worked previously as a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Oslo. He has spent visiting research stays at the Food Studies Centre at SOAS, The University of Chicago and Columbia University. His extensive research and working experience in food systems, including in Sri Lanka, has inspired the approach and design of EATWELL integrating the crucial contributions of each project member. He will conduct ethnographic research in Bumthang and the Punakha-Gasa valley following the lifelines of food as enmeshed with socio-cultural and material aspects. His fieldwork prepares the ground for the fieldwork in the other sites which he will coordinate and supervise.

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Nina Cecilie Øverby

Nina Cecilie Øverby is a Professor of Public Health Nutrition and Nutritional Epidemiology at UiA. Her main research focus is nutrition in the early phases of life ranging from preconception, through pregnancy, childhood, and adolescence in relation to health outcomes. She heads the UiA Priority Research Centre of Lifecourse Nutrition and is the PI of Nutrition Now. She is a PI of seven dietary interventions in young children and their parents aiming to improve diet and reduce levels of obesity. She is a member of the National Nutritional Council of Norway since 2015 and she headed the national work on evaluating current dietary guidelines according to sustainability between 2015 and 2017. ensure the quality of the dietary assessments in this project and contribute to our analyses.

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Heidi Fjeld

Heidi Fjeld is an Associate Professor in Medical Anthropology in the Department of Community Medicine and Global Health at the Institute of Health and Society, UiO. Her main expertise is Tibetan and Himalayan studies, focusing on culture, health, and healing among farmers in high altitude areas, which is relevant to this project. Fjeld is the co-organizer of the Tibetan and Himalayan research series at the UiO. She is also involved in culture-sensitive nutrition interventions in Malawi and is chair of the research group Engaged Community Medicine at UiO. She will co-supervise PhD 2.

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Anine Christine Medin

Medin is an Associate Professor at the Department of Nutrition and Public Health at the University of Agder, Norway. Medin is an expert in dietary assessment methods, with extensive experience in developing new tools in different groups and validating these using biomarkers and observation techniques. She is currently the PI of VeggiSkills, in which sustainable eating habits among adolescents is in focus, where diet nutritional status, food- and nutrition literacy is investigated. Medin is also co-PI of a large nutrition implementation project, Nutrition Now, funded by the Norwegian Research Council. Moreover, she is currently leading a project in which develops and validates a Norwegian version of myfood24, which is a web-based dietary assessment tool, based on the Norwegian food composition table. She will ensure the quality of the dietary assessments in this project and will co-supervize the PhD student conducting the 24h dietary recalls and analyses.

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Neyzang Wangmo

Neyzang Wangmo is the Founding Director of the Medical Education Centre for Research, Innovation and Training (MECRIT) at KGUMSB. She obtained her PhD at the Faculty of Health Sciences, La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia. She is a key resource for the project owing to her experiences in committees and as Chairperson of the REBH at the Ministry of Health in Bhutan. Her in-depth and comprehensive knowledge of health issues and the health sector in Bhutan is of vital importance to the success of this project.

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Tashi Choden

Tashi Choden is an Associate Lecturer in socio-cultural anthropology at the Royal Thimphu College in Bhutan, teaching at the first BA anthropology program in Bhutan together with Dolma Choden Roder. She has an MA in Anthropology from Savitribai Phule Pune University in Maharashtra, India. Her interests in medical anthropology, food and nutrition, and environmental humanities will come to fruition in the EATWELL project as she will be a key resource person for the research in Bumthang and will carry out ethnographic fieldwork as well.

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Paljor Galey

Paljor Galey is a Lecturer of History and Anthropology at Sherubtse College under the Royal University of Bhutan. He has a Masters in Social and Cultural Anthropology and has been conducting ethnographic studies on rituals and indigenous knowledge in Bhutan. His background in cultural anthropology will help to carry out the project along with his supervision of one or two advanced students.

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Liv Elin Torheim

Liv Elin Torheim is Department Director of the Department of Physical Health and Aging of the Norwegian Insitute of Public Health and is Professor of Public Health Nutrition at OsloMet—Oslo Metropolitan University. Torheim has extensive experience studying dietary intake, food security and child and adult nutritional status in Asia (Nepal and India) and Africa (Mali and Algeria). Her expertise in global nutrition and PhD 1 co-supervision are key to this project.

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Marianne Morseth

Marianne Morseth is Associate Professor of Public Health Nutrition at OsloMet. Morseth has experience in researching nutrition among children in Nepal, which provides a comparative advantage.

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Tshering Jamtsho

Tshering jamtsho has a Bachelor in Sociology from Lovely University in India and is also a certified trekking and cultural guide in Bhutan. He has considerable guiding experience in northern Bhutan where he has led numerous treks passing some of the highest passes and mountains in Bhutan. During his trekking experience in the region, he has also established good contacts among the local communities and tribes through which he amassed a solid knowledge of the local cultures. He will work as a research assistant deploying his knowledge of the local communities and will guide the researchers of EATWELL through the cultural habits and lead them safely through these high-altitude and mountainous areas.

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Tandin Penjor

Tandin Penjor is an Associate Lecturer in Political Science and Sociology programme at Sherubtse College in Bhutan. He is currently serving as the Programme Leader for the Political Science and Sociology Programme. Tandin holds a Master in Public Policy from University Malaya, Malaysia and a Bachelor in Political Science and Sociology form Sherubtse College. During his education and his academic career he has developed expertise in the fields of Political Science, Public Policy, and Sociology and Cultural Anthropology. His background in Cultural Anthropology and knowledge of the country and the eastern region will contribute to EATWELL. Tandin has also adeptly delivered life skills training in Communication skills, Motivation and Time Management to students and county leaders. These qualities will prove valuable in fostering good connections with stakeholders and communities important in conducting anthropological fieldwork central to this project.

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Karma Choki Dema

Karma Choki Dema is a 2022 graduate with a Bachelor degree in History from Sherubtse College. Her knowledge contributes with the historical perspective on changes occurring currently in Bhutan. Moreover, her leadership experience during school days has enhanced her leadership qualities as well as her communication and social skills, initiating interactive activities and fostering collaboration. She enjoys engaging with diverse individuals has a deep interest in studying culture. She also wishes to pursue further studies which is why she conducts ethnographic fieldwork and conducts qualitative interviews as a Research Assistant on the EATWELL project in Bhutan, participating in fieldwork and agriculture, cooking, and village gatherings and contributing to the understanding of food as entangled with culture and society.

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Elena Neri

Elena Neri is a PhD student in the Health and Sports Sciences at the University of Agder (Norway), where she is specializing in the field of the Anthropology of Food and Nutrition. She has a food-focused interdisciplinary background - including food economics, product development, nutrition, and anthropology - in Italy and the UK. Before embarking on the EATWELL project, Elena completed her MA in the Anthropology of Food at SOAS (London) and then worked as a Research Assistant on the ‘Food, with Care’ project, supporting the development of a holistic food strategy for a children’s hospital in Cambridge. Elena will be carrying out ethnographic fieldwork in Thimphu and Haa, supervised by Wim and Heidi.

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Samden Dolma

Samden Dolma has a Bachelor degree in political science and sociology from Sherubtse College in Bhutan. She is a de-suup and a community-based scout. Her interests include hiking and community service. She works as a research assistant and is being deployed in the field to contribute to the EATWELL project, making use of her social skills and passion for knowledge.

Tashi
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