Elizabeth Ransom

Professor Elizabeth Ransom
Interim Director of the School of International Affairs
Associate Professor of International Affairs
(814) 867-2792
253 Katz Building

Ph.D., Michigan State University
M.A., Michigan State University
B.A., Western Carolina University
Curriculum Vitae

Elizabeth Ransom is the Interim Director and an Associate Professor of the School of International Affairs. She is also a senior research associate in the Rock Ethics Institute. She holds an M.A. and Ph.D. in sociology from Michigan State University. Prior to joining Penn State, she served on the Sociology faculty at the University of Richmond since 2003 and as a research associate with the Institute for Theory and Practice of International Relations at the College of William and Mary from 2013-2017.

Ransom's research interests are in the areas of international development and globalization, especially in Sub-Saharan Africa; gender; the political economy of agriculture and food systems; and social studies of science and technology. She has conducted research in Australia, Botswana, Namibia, South Africa, Uganda and the United States.

Ransom teaches graduate classes focused on international agriculture and food systems, development and the ethics of development assistance, and globalization.

Ransom has published articles in journals such as Gender & SocietyJournal of Rural Studies, and Rural Sociology and she has two edited books, Rural America in a Globalizing World: Problems and Prospects for the 2010s (West Virginia University Press, 2014, with coeditors Conner Bailey and Leif Jensen) and Global Meat: Social and Environmental Consequences of the Expanding Meat Industry (MIT Press, 2019, with co-editor Bill Winders).


B. Winders and Elizabeth Ransom, eds., Global Meat: Social and Environmental Consequences of the Expanding Meat Industry (Cambridge: MIT Press), 2019. https://mitpress.mit.edu/books/global-meat

C. Baily, L. Jensen, and E. Ransom, eds., Rural America in a Globalizing World: Problems and Prospects for the 2010s (Morgantown: West Virginia University Press), 2014. https://wvupressonline.com/node/538

Select Articles

DuPuis, M. E. Ransom, M. Worosz. 2022. “Food Supply Chain Shocks and the Pivot Toward Local: Lessons from the Global Pandemic.” Frontiers in Sustainable Food Systems Agroecology and Ecosystem Services. 6: 836574. https://doi.org/10.3389/fsufs.2022.836574

Ransom, E. 2021. “Impossible solutions: Competing values in marketing alternative proteins for sustainable food systems.” Journal of Rural Studies 86: 694-701. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jrurstud.2021.06.017

Ransom, E. C. Grady, L. Trepanier,** C. Bain. 2021. “Water Scarcity in a Private Development Program: A Role for STS in Cultivating a Situated Ethics.” Science, Technology, & Human Values. doi: 10.1177/01622439211052685.

Bain, C., E. Ransom, I. Halimatusa'diyah.** 2020. “Dairy Livestock Interventions for Food Security in Uganda: What are the implications for Women’s Empowerment?” Rural Sociology 85(4): 991-1020.  https://doi.org/10.1111/ruso.12332

Bain, C. E. Ransom, and I. Halimatusa'diyah.** 2018. “‘Weak Winners’ of Women’s Empowerment: The Gendered Effects of Dairy Livestock Assets on Time Poverty in Uganda” Journal of Rural Studies 61:100-109. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jrurstud.2018.03.004

Ransom, E., C. Bain, H. Bal*, N. Shannon.* 2017. “Cattle as Technological Interventions: The Gender Effects of Water Demand in Dairy Production in Uganda.” FACETS 2(2): 715-732. https://www.facetsjournal.com/doi/10.1139/facets-2017-0031

Ransom, E., C. Bain, and I. Halimatusa'diyah.** 2017. “Livestock-Livelihood Linkages in Uganda: The Benefits for Women and Rural Households?” Journal of Rural Social Sciences. 32(2): 37-68. https://lib.dr.iastate.edu/soc_las_pubs/26/

Ransom, E. and W. Wright. 2013. “Constructing Culinary Knowledge: Food and Agricultural Change in Community Cookbooks.”  Food, Culture & Society, 16 (4): 669-689. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.2752/175174413X13758634981895

Ransom, E. 2011. “Botswana’s Beef Global Commodity Chain:  Explaining the Resistance to Change.”  Journal of Rural Studies 27 (4): 431-439. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0743016711000520

Ransom, E. and C. Bain. 2011. “Gendering Agricultural Aid: An Analysis of Whether International Development Assistance Targets Women and Gender.”  Gender and Society 25(1): 48-74.  https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/0891243210392571