Autonomy, prosperity and food accessibility

Theme 5

The magnitude of climate change, world hunger inequities in access to quality food, and health problems related to poor diet forces us to think differently about various food systems.


Working on a better diet is one of the most powerful levers to move simultaneously towards a healthy planet and a healthy population. So we need to make a transition to more sustainability, resilience, and equity in each of the elements within food systems (food production, food chains, food environments, consumer habits). This transition can be a source of prosperity while meeting the objective of many governments to achieve greater food autonomy.

Whether technological, legal, or political, innovation is central to the transition of food systems to make them more sustainable, equitable, and anchored in an overall health objective.

The research associated with this theme looks at innovation strategies aimed at this transition, in order to reconcile the quality of the food offering, and the socio-economic aspects of the bio-food supply chains, while putting in place intervention plans to resolve issues related to the competitiveness of our sectors as well as to social inequalities in health.


Territorialized and Sustainable Food Systems

This sub-theme aims at addressing, in a transdisciplinary approach, the issues and innovations necessary for the setting up of territorialized food systems.

  • SAT-Québec project
  • Project on food loss and waste
  • Governance issues of food systems


Competitiveness and Innovation of the Bio-Food Sector

By first identifying the issues associated with competitiveness and innovation into a context of food autonomy, prosperity, and accessibility, we will be able in a second phase to explore technologies (innovative, emerging, and already existing) and approaches (commercial, political, legal) that could be used to address these issues.

  • Description/modeling of the interrelationships between the different stakeholders in the field and identifying opportunities.
  • Exploring technologies that respond to regional and sectoral issues.
  • Putting in place mechanisms favouring the accessibility and use of the identified/explored technologies (incubator, cooperative, grouping of producers, access to the equipment of universities and research centers).

Public Policy and Regulation for Sustainable Food Systems and Healthy Eating

Legal and policy innovations (local, national or international) can have a significant and positive impact on several constituent elements of food systems and thus induce a substantive change towards more sustainability and equity, in an overall health objective.

  • The role of law in food systems: DDSA Chair project with FAO
  • Other projects with FAO
  • International standardization
  • Protection of agricultural land
  • Indigenous food systems

Social Inequalities and Food Insecurity

Social inequalities and food insecurity are intrinsically linked. The transition to sustainable food systems must take into account this reality and the scientific knowledge developed to address the different issues of concern associated with this interaction. This transition must also be conducted in an inclusive way by inviting vulnerable and marginalized populations to participate in decision-making processes so that their experiences and knowledge are integrated into the policies and measures adopted.

  • Documenting food security projects in greater Quebec City region and evaluating their impacts.
  • Comparative analysis – in Quebec, Canada, and internationally – of public policies that could be used to fight social inequalities and food insecurity.
  • Mobilizing a human rights framework to ensure food security and social justice.



Quality Food Supply for All

  • The right of each individual to a portion of healthy and adequate food.
  • Collaboration with the Observatoire de la qualité de l’offre alimentaire, whose mission is to monitor changes in the food supply in order to assist in the collective effort aimed at improving its quality and accessibility.


Areas of Expertise

  • Food law
  • Marketing
  • Micro- and macroeconomics
  • Innovation strategies
  • Bio-food policies
  • Governance models for territorialized food systems

Research chairs

Economic Research Chair on the Egg Industry

Holder: Maurice Doyon
For more information

Legal Research Chair in Food Diversity and Security

Holder: Geneviève Parent
For more information

See all the themes

Our scientific program revolves around six major unifying themes.