Personal profile

Personal Statement

Francesca Vaghi is a Research Associate at the School of Social Work & Social Policy. With Dr Ellen Stewart, she conducts research on the work of contemporary NHS charities as part of the Border Crossings project:

Francesca is interested in medical anthropology, the anthropology of policy, and childhood studies. She completed her PhD in 2019 at SOAS, University of London, titled: 'Food, Policy and Practice in Early Years Education and Care: children, practitioners and parents in a London nursery'. For her doctoral research, Francesca conducted ethnographic fieldwork in a state-maintained nursery in London over a 12-month period, developing a child-centred methodological approach to meaningfully involve children in research. Aside from investigating how children create self and peer identities through food and eating practices, her work explores how children’s food policy fits into family intervention policies in the context of Britain’s mixed economy of welfare, and how notions of ‘good food’ and ‘good parenting’ (particularly mothering) are interlinked. 

Francesca is interested in advancing critical approaches in public health, specifically looking at how dominant policy discourses (re)create and seek to address 'problems' that have particular implications for working class and ethnic minority families, particularly in matters related to food insecurity, childhood poverty, and childcare policy.