image of Merisa ThompsonDr Merisa S. Thompson

Postdoctoral Research Fellow

Telephone: 0114 222 7120
Room: Floor 3, ICOSS


Merisa is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the Department of Politics. She undertook her doctoral training in Interdisciplinary Gender Studies at the Institute for Gender and Development Studies (IGDS) at The University of the West Indies (UWI), Trinidad and Tobago, which she completed in 2017. Merisa also holds a MA in Sociological Research Methods and a BA (Hons) in Sociology from the University of Sheffield. She has previously worked as a Research Fellow at the Centre for Science Education at Sheffield Hallam University and as a Research Consultant in the NGO and development sector in the UK and the Caribbean.

Merisa’s current postdoctoral research is part of the HEFCE/University of Sheffield match-funded N8 Agrifood programme and focuses on global food justice and ethical tensions between producer livelihoods, animal welfare, environmental sustainability and human nutrition, with a particular focus on the UK and global dairy sector.

Her doctoral research was supported by a 4-year UWI Postgraduate scholarship and was a gendered political economy analysis of historical and contemporary power relations between the state, capital and food producers in Trinidad.

She is also a key member of the White Rose Consortium: ‘Tackling the Multi-Dimensional Dynamics of Smallholder Palm Oil Production in West Africa’.


Research interests:

  • gender, politics and power
  • food, agriculture and the environment
  • global commodity chains
  • feminist and international political economy
  • critical, post-structural and feminist epistemologies

Merisa’s research sits at the cross section of critical and feminist political economy and the study of gender, food, agriculture and development. She is particularly interested in the material and ideological relations of power, the social and political dimensions of production and consumption, the politics of food, global commodity chains, food and agriculture, development theory and Caribbean studies. Her current post-doctoral research focuses on global food justice and ethical tensions between human nutrition, environmental sustainability, producer livelihoods, and animal welfare along different nodes of UK and global food commodity chains.

Publications and Papers

Journal articles:

Thompson, M.S. (forthcoming). The Gendered Construction of Food Producers: Intersections of Power and Identity in Trinidad, Review of International Political Economy

Thompson, M.S. (2019). 'Still searching for (food) sovereignty: Why are radical discourses only partially mobilised in the independent Anglo-Caribbean?' Geoforum 101 (May): 90-99

Book chapters:

Bishop, M.L. & Thompson, M.S. (forthcoming). 'The IPE of Caribbean Development' In E. Vivares (Ed.) Routledge Handbook of International Political Economy. London: Routledge.

Thompson, M.S. (2018). Critical Perspectives on Gender, Food & Political Economy. In J. Elias & A. Roberts (Eds), Handbook on the International Political Economy of Gender. Edward Elgar. pp.470-485

Blog posts:

Thompson, M. (2018, 7 November). ‘What is the financialisation of food and why should we care?Sheffield Political Economy Research Institute (SPERI) Blog

Thompson, M. (2016, 15 September). ‘Eating Power’: Oligopolisation in the Haitian Food Economy’. Sheffield Political Economy Research Institute (SPERI) Blog

Thompson, M. (2014, 3 May). ‘Aftermath of an Oil Spill’. Global Voices

Professional Services

Merisa is an Associate Fellow of the Sheffield Political Economy Research Institute (SPERI), a member of The University of Sheffield Sustainable Food Futures (SheFF) group and a Research Fellow at the Sheffield Institute of International Development (SIID).

Invited talks:

Searching for Food Sovereignty in the Anglophone Caribbean, SOAS University 'Political Economy Approaches to Food Regimes Workshop', January 2018

The Gendered Construction of Food Producing Identities in Trinidad and Tobago, University of Warwick 'Food and Development: Views from the Field' Seminar, May 2017.

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