Patrick Webb

  • Alexander McFarlane Professor of Nutrition

Patrick Webb is engaged in research and policy guidance around the globe as Director for USAID’s Feed the Future Nutrition Innovation Lab (fieldwork ongoing in Nepal, Uganda, Malawi, Bangladesh, Egypt and Cambodia), and leads the US government’s Food Aid Quality Review (cost-effectiveness trials in Burkina Faso, Sierra Leone and Malawi).  Until 2005, he worked for the United Nations' World Food Programme as Chief of Nutrition. During that time he was a first-responder to the Asian tsumani disaster in Aceh. He was also part of the MDG Hunger Task Force reporting to Secretary General Kofi Annan, and a member of the steering committee of the UN's Standing Committee on Nutrition (SCN). Earlier, Dr. Webb spent 9 years with the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI). His high-level interactions with governments and donor organizations globally include work at ministerial levels in countries like Indonesia, Vietnam, North Korea, Kenya, Haiti, Cambodia and Timor Leste and Ethiopia.

Dr. Webb’s expertise lies in food policy analysis, agriculture systems, international nutrition programming, and emergency relief. His ongoing research involves humanitarian policy and practice, development policy, micronutrient deficiencies, food system development, aflatoxins and nutrition outcomes, and implementation science.

In terms of professional outreach and impact, he currently serving as senior adviser to the Global Panel on Agriculture and Food Systems for Nutrition, as member of the Independent Science and Partnership Council (ISPC) of the Consultative Group on International Agriculture Research (CGIAR), and a member of the World Health Organization/UNICEF Technical Expert Advisory committee on nutrition monitoring (TEAM).

He is an Honorary Professor at Hohenheim University (Stuttgart, Germany), and has a faculty position by courtesy at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy (Tufts University).


  • Ph.D., Economic Geography, University of Birmingham (UK)
  • M.A., African Studies, Centre for West African Studies, University of Birmingham (UK)
  • B.A. (hons.), Geography, University of Sussex (UK)

Research Activities

Research and Policy Analysis Activities:

  1. PI and Program Director for the Feed the Future Nutrition Innovation Lab, funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) (2010-2020). Visit the web site. 
  2. PI (with Beatrice Rogers as co-PI) for the Food Aid Quality Review, funded by the Office of Food for Peace of USAID (2009 - 2018):
  3. PI for Evidence and Policy Advice to the Global Panel on Agriculture and Food Systems for Nutrition. Funded by the UK Department for International Development and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Visit the web site.
  4. PI for research on Micronutrient Deficiencies in South Asia: Impacts, Consequences and Costs, funded by UNICEF Regional Bureau (2015-2017).
  5. Team member for Global Dietary Database research (lead by Dean Dariush Mozaffarian), funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Visit the web site.