Faculty and Researchers
Daniel MaxwellHenry J. Leir Professor in Food Security and Research Director
Director, Master of Arts in Humanitarian Assistance (MAHA) Program
Daniel Maxwell is the Henry J. Leir Professor in Food Security at the Friedman School of Nutrition and The Fletcher School at Tufts University. He is also a research director at the Feinstein International Center. In 2016-2017, he served as the acting director of the Center. His recent research focuses on the re-emergence of famines in the 21st century and the politics of information and analysis. Dan also researches humanitarian information systems, food security, and livelihood systems under stress. He teaches courses on humanitarian action and humanitarian policy, as well as famine and food insecurity in situations of crisis and chronic vulnerability. He directs the Master of Arts in Humanitarian Assistance (MAHA) program at Tufts.
He is the author, with Kirsten Gelsdorf, of Understanding the Humanitarian World (Routledge, 2019). He is the author, with Nisar Majid, of Famine in Somalia: Competing Imperatives, Collective Failures (Oxford University Press, 2016). He is the co-author, with Chris Barrett of Cornell University, of Food Aid After Fifty Years: Recasting Its Role (Routledge, 2005).
Since 2014, Dan has been a member of the Famine Review Committee for the Integrated Food Security Phase Classification system—the formal mechanism by which contemporary famines are analyzed and declared. Prior to joining the faculty at Tufts, Dan worked for two decades for humanitarian agencies, mostly in Africa. His most recent position was Deputy Regional Director for Eastern and Central Africa for CARE International.
He holds a B.Sc. from Wilmington College, a master’s degree from Cornell University, and a Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin
- Famine and acute humanitarian crises
- Humanitarian information systems
- Resilience, livelihoods, food security, and the measurement of food security
- Food assistance
- Emergency preparedness and contingency planning
- Humanitarian action and policy
- Sub-Saharan Africa
- Greater Horn of Africa
- Humanitarian Action in Complex Emergencies (NUTR 229/DHP D230), Fall Term
- Seminar in Humanitarian Issues (NUTR 223), Fall Term
- International Humanitarian Response (NUTR 324/DHP D-213), Spring Term
- Transnational Social Issues: Humanitarian Assistance (GMAP 215)
- Famine, Livelihoods, and Resilience: Directed Study, Spring Term
- Maxwell, D. “Measuring Food Insecurity: The Frequency and Severity of ‘Coping Strategies.’” Food Policy 21, 3 (1996). 291–303.
- Maxwell, D., Levin, C., Armar-Klemesu, M., Ruel, M., Morris, S., Ahiadeke, C. “Urban Livelihoods, Food and Nutrition Security in Greater Accra.” IFPRI Research Report 112. Washington: International Food Policy Research Institute. (2000).
- Maxwell, D. “Alternative Food Security Strategy: A Household Analysis of Urban Agriculture in Kampala.” World Development 23, 10 (1995). 1669–1681.
- Barrett, C. & Maxwell, D. Food Aid After Fifty Years: Recasting its Role. London: Routledge. (2005).
- Maxwell, D. “The Political Economy of Urban Food Security in Sub-Saharan Africa.” World Development 27, 11 (1999). 1939–1953.
- Daniel Maxwell, Peter Hailey, Abdullahi Khalif and Francesco Checchi. 2020. “Determining Famine: A Multi-Dimensional Analysis for the 21st Century.” Food Policy. Vol. 92 (April) Article 101832. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.foodpol.2020.101832
- Bapu Vaitla, Jennifer Cisse, Joanna Upton, Girmay Tesfaye, Nigussie Abadi, and Daniel Maxwell. 2020. “How the choice of food security indicators affects the assessment of resilience—an example from northern Ethiopia.” Food Security. Vol. 12(1), pp.137–150. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12571-019-00989-w
- Daniel Maxwell and Kirsten Gelsdorf. 2019. Understanding the Humanitarian World. London: Routledge.
- Daniel Maxwell and Peter Hailey. 2018. “The Re-emergence of Famine in the 21st Century.” Special Edition on, “La lutte contre la famine: un mythe de Sisyphe?” Politorbis. No. 66. (March). pp.13-22.
Daniel Maxwell, Peter Hailey, and colleagues published an article in The New Humanitarian, which discuses how humanitarians must focus on the loss of death and urgently preventing it rather than…Read More
Daniel Maxwell Presents on the re-emergence of famine in the 21st century at the 10th Anniversary of the Global Food Security Cluster
On November 11th, 2020, Daniel Maxwell presented at the 10th Anniversary of the Global Food Security Cluster on the recurrence of famine in the 21st century. He discussed the factors…Read More
Feinstein Research Projects
This study seeks to understand the availability and quality of information, and the external influences on data collection and analysis for the classification of food emergencies.Read More
In this partnership with Mercy Corps, the Feinstein International Center team investigates the nature of social networks and social connectedness, and explores how humanitarian assistance can strengthen these as a key aspect of resilience, recovery and relief interventions in complex humanitarian emergencies.Read More
“I could not sleep while they were hungry”: Investigating the role of social networks in Yemen’s humanitarian crisis
This brief report presents initial findings from a study investigating the role of social networks in Yemen’s humanitarian crisis.Read More
This paper reviews real-time monitoring (RTM), how it fits into a humanitarian information system, how systems quickly adjusted toward RTM in 2020, and provides a series of case studies of RTM systems, their objectives, and their outcomes.Read More