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Melissa Leach

CBE FBA (Institute of Development Studies)

Professor Leach is Director of the Institute of Development Studies (IDS) at the University of Sussex. She co-directed from 2006-2014 the interdisciplinary, internationally collaborative ESRC STEPS (Social, Technological and Environmental Pathways to Sustainability) Centre. As an anthropologist she has thirty years of long-term ethnographic research experience in West Africa, focusing on eastern Sierra Leone, Guinea, Liberia and the Gambia. Recent research and publications focus on pandemic preparedness, the anthropology and ecology of zoonotic disease, the politics of green transformations, and sustainability and inequality. Amongst external roles, she was vice-chair of the Science Committee of Future Earth 2012-2017, lead author of the 2016 World Social Science Report on Challenging Inequalities and the UN Women’s World Survey on the Role of Women in Economic Development 2014. Professor Leach is a member of the Strategic Coherence of ODA Research (SCOR) Board and the International Panel of Experts on Sustainable Food Systems (IPES-Food).