ICS Seminar Series - Anisah Madden, Bhavya Chitranshi, Professor Katherine Gibson

Date: Thursday, 4 November 2021
Time: 11.30 a.m.–1.00 p.m.
Venue: The seminar will be hosted online via Zoom. Please RSVP to e.blight@westernsydney.edu.au by 3 November, 5:00 p.m., to receive the Zoom details.

Remembering the promises of food security, reimagining a different food future

Panel: Anisah Madden, Bhavya Chitranshi, Professor Katherine Gibson


The panel will set up a dialogue around food security. We begin with reflections on development debates of the 1950s and how food security became a matter of concern. Mainstream approaches to food security will be contrasted with current movements and alternative community practices in India that are seeking to shape food futures. Peasant food systems produce around 70% of the world’s food. We review peasant and Indigenous efforts to wrest food policy from the hold of technocratic agendas that privilege agri-business via the UN Committee on World Food Security.

Katherine Gibson, The Geographer’s burden—feeding India’s starving millions: Oskar Spate’s misgivings

Bhavya Chitranshi, Decolonizing food security in India: Reimagining agriculture through indigenous women’s collective farming practices

Anisah Madden, Remembering the culture in agriculture: Reclaiming food futures via the UN Committee on World Food Security


Anisah Madden is a PhD candidate at Western Sydney University's Institute for Culture and Society. Her PhD research explores the ways small-scale food producers’ relationships with land and earth others affect the ways they approach and experience politics. Her work highlights how these grassroots perspectives are influencing food policy debates through an International Civil Society and Indigenous People's Mechanism (CSM), an autonomous space that facilitates the participation of peasant and Indigenous food producers and food and agricultural workers in the UN Committee on World Food Security

Bhavya Chitranshi is a PhD candidate at the Institute for Culture and Society at the Western Sydney University. She is the co-founder of an adivasi (indigenous) single women's collective, Eka Nari Sanghathan, in Odisha, India. For the last 7 years, in close collaboration with the collective, she has been doing engaged action research work on questions related to singleness, gender, sustainable agriculture, socio-economic transformation and postcapitalist politics. Engaging in a collaborative process of ecologically sustainable agriculture with Eka Nari Sanghathan, in her PhD she is exploring connections between indigenous perspectives-knowledge-practices and possible postcapitalist-feminist praxis in the rural and adivasi context.

Katherine Gibson is a Professorial Fellow in the Institute for Culture and Society at Western Sydney University. She is an economic geographer with an international reputation for innovative research on economic transformation and over 30 years’ experience of working with communities to build resilient economies. She is currently doing a scoping study on strengthening agricultural resilience in the Western Province of Papua New Guinea funded by the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR).