Dr Robert Akparibo

BSc (Ghana), MSc (Denmark), MPH (Sheffield, UK) & PhD (Sheffield, UK), MEd (Sheffield, UK)

Population Health, School of Medicine and Population Health

Senior University Teacher in Global Health and Nutrition

Director of Students Experience (Postgraduate Taught Programmes)

Robert Akparibo
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+44 114 222 4269

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Dr Robert Akparibo
Population Health, School of Medicine and Population Health
Room 2037, 2nd Floor
Regent Court (ScHARR)
30 Regent Street
S1 4DA

Dr. Robert Akparibo is a Senior University Tutor (Associate Professor) in Global Health and Nutrition Epidemiology based within the Section of Public Health, at the School of Health and Related Research (ScHARR), University of Sheffield. He is a Registered Nutritionist (Public Health) with the UK Academy for Nutrition (AfN), and Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academic (SFHEA). Dr Akparibo received his academic and professional trainings in Public Health, Epidemiology and Biostatistics, and Nutrition Epidemiology at the University of Sheffield (UK), University of Copenhagen (Denmark) and Imperial College London (UK) respectively. He has also received programme management training from the Jagiellonian University School of Public health in Poland and the Rene School of Public Health (France). He is a certified Programme Manager (UK), after completing the UK Project Managers Fundamental certification course.

Dr Akparibo has considerable real life project management, and evaluation experience using realist methodology. Prior to joining the ScHARR, the University of Sheffield, Dr Akparibo worked with the World Health Organisation (WHO) in Denmark, and United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) in Ghana, as well as several other international and national NGOs including with Family Health International in Senegal, Hellen Keller International in Burkina Faso, and the Association of Faith-based Development NGOs in Northern Ghana. During this period, he led the design and delivery of cost effective maternal and child health and nutrition interventions to improve the health and wellbeing of mothers and children in Sub-Saharan Africa.

Dr Akparibo’s research is largely informed by his previous development work in global health and nutrition, with specific focus on nutrition epidemiology, food and nutrition security and malnutrition, food systems and policies, and maternal and child health, including infant and young child feeding behaviours and practices that impacts on the health of children. Over the last five years, Dr Akparibo and his colleagues have been exploring the nutrition transition in Africa with the aim to understanding what drives this. In Ghana and Kenya for instance, Dr Akparibo and his colleagues have investigated the food environment and the influences of this on dietary behaviours and practices, and the implication of these behaviours on NCDs. Evidence from their work has led to the review of the Ghanaian NCD policy and implementation strategy. It has also paved the way for the development of Food-based Dietary Guidelines for African countries, as well as the development of the African Food Environment Framework - https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33886599/ for guiding the design and implementation of interventions to tackle the double burden of malnutrition. Methodologically, Dr Akparibo has strong expertise in mixed methods research, combining qualitative and quantitative research methods, and systematic evidence synthesis including systematic reviews and realist evidence reviews/synthesis.

He is a visiting Adjunct Professor of Global Health and Nutrition Epidemiology at the School of Public Health, University of Allied Health Sciences in Ghana (since May 2022), and Co-chair of the Global School Health and Nutrition Special Interest Group, based within the Nutrition Society UK (since May 2022). He has been a regular expert reviewer for leading UK Research Councils, including the National Institute of Health Research (NIHR, UK), and the Medical Research Council (MRC). He has consulted for several organisations including work carried out for the World Health Organisation (WHO), the World Food Programme (WFP), the European Centre for Disease Control (ECDC), The UK Department for International Development (DFID), OXFAM Great Britain, Feinstein International (USA), the UKAID, as well as the UK Public Sector Statutory organisations including the Sheffield City Council, and third Sector Charity organisations including the British Red Cross. He is an executive and a trustee member of the Africa Nutrition Society and the Ghana academic platform for scaling up nutrition.


SFHEA -Senior Fellow of Higher Education Academy (SFHEA).
M.Ed - Masters of Education, Teaching and Learning in Higher Institutions - University of Sheffield (UK).
MSc - Masters of Public Health with specialisation in Epidemiology and Biostatistics - University of Copenhagan (Denmark).
MPH - Masters of Public Health, University of Sheffield (UK).
BSc (Hons) - Public Health Nutrition, The University for Development Studies, Ghana.
PGcert - Postgraduate Certificate in Nutrition Epidemiology - Imperial College London.

Research interests

• Nutrition Epidemiology
• Food and nutrition security and malnutrition
• Food environment, food systems and policy
• Maternal and child health, including infant and young child feeding behaviours and practices that impacts on child health.


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Journal articles

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Journal articles

Conference proceedings papers



Research group

Food and Nutrition Research Group, ScHARR
Global Health Managament and Policy Research group, ScHARR.
Fellow of the Institute for Sustainable Foods, UoS.
Fellow of the Institute for Global Sustainable Development , UoS.


Current projects

• Co-I: NutriShed Project Funded by the Innovative Methods and Metrics for Agriculture and Nutrition Actions (IMMANA). Adapting Food Shed Analysis for Nutrition Security Planning in Ghana. Project partners: University of Ghana School of Public Health (led by Professor Richmond Aryeetey), and the Sheffield University Institute for Sustainable Foods (led by Professor Bhavani Shankar).
• Co-Lead: Erasmus Plus Knowledge Exchange Project funded by the European Erasmus+ Credit Mobility Fund. The project aim at strengthening the existing collaboration between the university of Ghana and the university of Sheffield through staff and students’ mobility for Knowledge exchange around teaching and research.
• Co-Led: Evaluating the impact of social enterprise interventions in improving food and nutrition security in sub-Saharan Africa. Project partners: Maastricht University, Netherlands (co-led by Prof. Onno Van Schayck and Dr Victoria von Salmuth).
Previous/completed projects
• Co-I: Drivers of Food Choice Competitive Grants Program funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. This project investigated and mapped out the factors in the social and physical food environments that drive consumption of energy dense nutrient-poor foods and beverages, to identify interventions targeting women and adolescent girls throughout the reproductive life course; 2017-2019. Partners: University of Ghana, University of Allied Health Sciences (Ghana), University of Liverpool.
• Co-I: TACLED project: Transitions in African Cities Leveraging Evidence for Diet-related non communicable diseases This is a MRC-led Foundation Award to study the dietary transitions in African cities in Ghana and Kenya. The project involved interdisciplinary partnership of ten co-applicants from five academic institutions across Ghana, Kenya, and the UK. 2017-2019. Key partner institutions: University of Ghana, University of Allied Health Sciences (Ghana), University of Liverpool, Loughborough University (UK) and the African Population and Health Research Centre (APHRC).
• Co-I: Systematic qualitative evidence synthesis on feasibility, acceptability, accessibility and sustainability, and the cost of Ready-to-Use Therapeutic Foods (RUTFs) with low milk content (<50%) of protein coming from dairy products compared to the standard RUTF for treating uncomplicated severe acute malnutrition in children. The evidence generated from this synthesis was used to update WHO guideline on ready-to-use therapeutic foods. 2019-2020. https://app.overton.io/document.php?policy_document_id=who-e2797b378f247779d9abbede650ee09c.
• Co-I: Cooking as part of a Sustainable Food System – creating a wider evidence base for policy makers. 2019-2020.
• PI: Building research capacity for evidence generation to address the double burden of malnutrition in Ghana. 2019-2020.
• Co-I: Empowering Women through health literacy to address non-communicable diseases in low and middle-income countries’ (EmPower) Project. 2017-2018. Partners: University of Massachusetts, USA, University of Ghana and University of Sydney, Australia.
• PI: Evaluating the effectiveness of nutrition interventions in humanitarian emergencies. 2016-2017, funded by DFID/OXFAM.

Consultancies projects completed.
• Co-I: Impact evaluation of British Red Cross Community Connectors programme in the UK. 2017-2019
• Co-I: Impact evaluation of CRUSE Bereavement Service in the UK. 2018-2019.
• Co-I: Impact evaluation of the Sheffield City Council Keeping People well in their communities’ programme. 2015-2017.
• Evaluation Expert Advisor: Third Independent External Evaluation of the European Communicable Diseases Control (ECDC) programme. 2018-2019.
• PI: Review of Stakeholder Views and management of the UK Department for International Development (DfID) Health Partnership Scheme in Ghana. May 2016.
• Co-I: Development and evaluation of community health and well-being programmes in Sheffield, Sheffield City Council. 2015-2016.

Teaching interests

Nutrition Epidemiology,
Nutrition in Emergency management,
Food systems, Policy and Food Sustainability
Food Security in the global South
Research methods
Health Needs Assessment,
Programme management and leadership,
Programme Evaluation Methods

Teaching activities

In ScHARR, I lead the development and delivery of teaching (as well as contributes to teach), of students pursuing the Masters of Public Health and MSc Human Nutrition programmes. Specific modules I lead/teach are listed below:

Module Leadership
- HAR6041: Health Needs Assessment, Planning and Evaluation (f2f)
- HAR6214: Nutrition in the Global South (f2f)

Teaching Contributions
- HAR686 Nutrition In emergency Situations (f2f).
- HAR685: Communicable Disease Control (f2f).
- HAR675: Key Issues in global Health (f2f and online).
- Year 2 MBChB programme: Global Perspective of public Health (f2f).
- HAR697: Using policy to strengthen Health systems (f2f and online).
- HAR682: Leading and managing Health Services (f2f and online).

In addition, I supervise Masters and PhD dissertations in my research interest areas.

Professional activities and memberships
  • Registered Nutritionist with the Association for Nutrition (AfN).
  • Member of Nutrition Society, UK.
  • Member of the African Nutrition Society, Ghana.
  • Member of the American Nutrition Society.