Siera Vercillo is a critical international development scholar, instructor, and practitioner with experience in research, policy analysis and project support in Africa, Europe and North America. My research is on the right to food, gender justice, agriculture systems development, human-environment interactions, political ecology and responsible investment. I hold a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) degree from the University of Toronto and a Master of Arts degree from the Institute of Development Studies, University of Sussex. I am now a Doctoral candidate working in the Environment Health and Hazards lab, Department of Geography at the University of Western Ontario under the supervision of Dr. Isaac Luginaah and Dr. Tony Weis. I am also a Queen Elizabeth Scholar at the Africa Institute at UWO and am supported by SSHRC, IDRC and more. My current research explains how agri-food policy and planning in sub-Saharan Africa, as in many other parts of the global south, has largely failed to address gendered dynamics of household food insecurity.
I also consult on a Government of Canada funded food security project, where I am piloting, redesigning and scaling a capacity building program for agriculture extension staff and farming organizations in Ghana, Sierra Leone and Mali. Here, I am collaborating with Ministries and non-governmental organizations, including agribusinesses and community members to impact farming livelihoods across West Africa. I have worked in Ghana with Engineers Without Borders Canada on agriculture systems development, focused on public extension services for smallholder farming development. I have also conducted research for policy analysis with the Future Agricultures Consortium, the Responsible Investing Committee at the University of Toronto and the Ministry of Food and Agriculture in Ghana.
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