Statistical modeller of the determinants of dietary choice and behaviour in Europe




Wednesday, March 8, 2023

Start Date

Saturday, April 1, 2023

INRAE presentation

The French National Research Institute for Agriculture, Food, and Environment (INRAE) is a major player in research and innovation. It is a community of 12,000 people with 272 research, experimental research, and support units located in 18 regional centres throughout France. Internationally, INRAE is among the top research organisations in the agricultural and food sciences, plant and animal sciences, as well as in ecology and environmental science. It is the world’s leading research organisation specialising in agriculture, food and the environment. INRAE’s goal is to be a key player in the transitions necessary to address major global challenges. Faced with a growing world population, climate change, resource scarcity, and declining biodiversity, the Institute has a major role to play in building solutions and supporting the necessary acceleration of agricultural, food and environmental transitions.

Work environment, missions and activities

Horizon Europe FEAST project 

The post-doctorate is part of the Horizon Europe FEAST project which aims to support the EU's equitable transition to healthy diets produced by sustainable food systems. FEAST will build on current best practice and design new solutions with food system stakeholders to identify how to support and empower them to facilitate and benefit from the transition to healthy and sustainable dietary behaviour at all levels and in all sectors of the food system. One of the objectives of the FEAST project is to identify, understand and measure the barriers and factors that influence the dietary behaviour of different groups, considering geographical, socio-economic, behavioural, gender and cultural differences.

Structural and geographical assignment

The position will be based in Avignon, France, in the Ecodevelopment Research Unit of INRAE, and the person recruited will be supervised by Davide Martinetti and Esther Sanz Sanz. The recruited person will interact with the numerous partners of the Horizon Europe FEAST project, and more particularly with the nutritionists of the IRD-UMR MOISA.


We are looking for a research fellow in statistical modelling of the determinants of dietary choice and behaviour in Europe and the multi-level relationships between individual behaviour, food environment and public actions. The main task of the person recruited will be to implement a comprehensive quantified modelling approach based on a conceptual framework developed by the Feast researchers. Formally, the framework corresponds to a certain number of hypotheses that structure the collection of primary and secondary qualitative and quantitative data on the determinants of dietary choice and behaviour in Europe. The modelling approach should therefore range from the methodological choice adapted to the conceptual framework and the data collected, to the implementation of an original statistical estimation of the values of the determinants and their relationships. The results should highlight and measure the relationship between individual behaviours (micro level), food environments (meso level) and public action (macro level) in order to allow the implementation of scenarios for improving human health and reducing the environmental impacts of food practices. In addition, the simulations will help to understand the linkages, negative externalities, positive synergies and optimal trade-offs between the implementation of solutions at different levels, in the field of health and sustainability.

This will involve:

  • Propose one or more modelling approaches adapted to the theoretical framework of the programme and the available data.
  • Collect the additional data necessary for the successful completion of the statistical estimation (e.g. geomatic data).
  • Implement the model, in collaboration with the other researchers of the programme. The results should make it possible to estimate the weight of each candidate variable on dietary choice and behaviour, but also the multi-level relationships between the micro, meso and macro levels
  • Participate, with the other researchers of the programme, in the construction of scenarios based on the results of the model and in their simulation 
  • Participate in the design and writing of a collective publication formalising the results of the mission.