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Cecilia Rocha

OfficeDCC-614, Daphne Cockwell Health Sciences Complex
Phone416-979-5000, ext. 556009

Cecilia Rocha (PhD) is the director and a professor in the School of Nutrition, and associate researcher and past director of the Centre for Studies in Food Security at Toronto Metropolitan University. Her research interests include:

  • Assessing the social efficiency of food security initiatives and programs.
  • The role of market failures in food insecurity.
  • The effectiveness of markets as policy tools.

From 2004 to 2010, Rocha was director of the project Building Capacity in Food Security in Brazil, developed in partnership with the Reference Centre for Food and Nutrition Security in Rio de Janeiro, and funded by the Canadian International Development Agency.

She has authored key papers on the innovative and pioneering policies and programs in food security in the city of Belo Horizonte, Brazil, and has been an invited speaker at many international meetings, such as the 2009 United Nations High Level Meeting on Food Security for All in Madrid, Spain, and the 2009 Parliamentary Meeting on the Occasion of the World Food Summit in Rome, Italy.

Rocha was an active member of the Toronto Food Policy Council from 2006 to 2011, and participated in the development of the Toronto Food Strategy (2009-2010). She has conducted research on food security conditions among immigrant populations in Toronto, and the manifestation of food sovereignty in an indigenous settlement in Brazil.

In 2012, she was invited to be part of a distinguished expert panel on the State of Knowledge of Food Security in Northern Canada by the Council of Canadian Academies.

Journal articles:


  • 2012 Title of Presentation: Belo Horizonte, Brazil: Lessons from (and listening to) the South. Centre for Food Policy, City University London Symposium: Local Food Policies in Practice: the state of the sub-national, London, UK, December 12, 2012.
  • 2012 Title of Presentation: Building the Road to the Right to Food in Brazil. The Atlantic Council of Canada Roundtable Discussion: Hungry for Stability: Food Security Challenges for the 21st Century, Toronto, January 10.