Aulo Gelli's main interests and experience lie broadly within the intersection of food policy and nutrition, with a particular focus on evaluating the impact of child health and nutrition interventions in low-income settings. His background and training involves a range of disciplines, and follows his interest in understanding complex systems. Gelli trained as a physicist at Imperial College London, then gained a MSc degree in neural networks at Kings College London working on semantic memory models, and then studied human perception at the Laboratory of Neurobiology at UCL. He then transitioned his career towards food policy, gaining a Masters degree in development economics and food security at the University of Rome, and a DPhil at the School of Public Health at Imperial College, studying the links between malnutrition and learning in school children in low-income settings.
As a senior scientist at the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), Aulo Gelli's work now centres on understanding trade-offs across systems linking agriculture, nutrition and health. This work builds on his efforts over the last eight years to study “Home-Grown” school feeding (HGSF). HGSF systems have the potential to link the increased demand for goods and services from school meals to community-based stakeholders, including small-holder farmers and processors (with important gender nuances), working along a set of food supply chains. Before joining IFPRI, Gelli worked as a research fellow at Imperial College, where he was the deputy director and technical lead of a $12 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation aimed at generating rigorous, policy relevant evidence on HGSF. As part of this programme, he led the development of the first randomised control trials on the impact of school meals linked to smallholder farmers, with ongoing studies in Mali and Ghana.
Languages spoken: English, French, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish