Dr. Elizabeth P. Ransom
Associate Professor of Sociology

Dr. Ransom's research interests are in the areas of international development and globalization, the sociology of agriculture and food, and social studies of science and technology. She has two ongoing research programs.  The first program focuses on the linkages between Southern African (South Africa, Botswana, and Namibia) red meat industries and global food systems.  The second program analyzes international agricultural development assistance in developing countries, with an emphasis on the ways in which agricultural assistance targets women and focuses on gender empowerment. She has also published articles focused on the global red meat trade, gender and agricultural development assistance, agricultural biotechnologies, and the patterns and problems surrounding modern food consumption practices. A tertiary area of research involves studying structured inequalities in sports. She also teaches courses within these areas of interest including, Feast & Famine: Inequalities in the Global Food System, Social Studies of Science and Technology, and Sport in Society.

Ransom's latest book is Rural America in a Globalizing World: Problems and Prospects for the 2010's, which she co-edited for the Rural Sociological Society. The book covers agriculture and food; natural resources; demographic change; the multi-faceted dimensions of diversity; and issues of rural economics, community, and quality of life. 

Ransom, E. with C. Baily and L. Jensen, Editors. 2014. Rural America in a Globalizing World: Problems and Prospects for the 2010s. Morgantown, WV: West Virginia University Press. Forthcoming 2014.

Ransom, E. and W. Wright. 2013. “Constructing Culinary Knowledge: Food and Agricultural Change in Community Cookbooks.”  Food, Culture & Society, 16 (4): 669-689.

Ransom, E.  2011.  “Botswana’s Beef Global Commodity Chain:  Explaining the Resistance to Change.”  Journal of Rural Studies 27 (4): 431-439.
Ransom, E. and C. Bain. February 2011. Gendering Agricultural Aid: An Analysis of Whether International Development Assistance Targets Women and Gender. Gender and Society 25(1): 48-74. [Listen to a podcast in which Ransom and Bain describe the article.]
Friedland, B., E. Ransom, S. Wolf.  2010 “Agrifood Alternatives and Reflexivity in Academic Practice.”  Rural Sociology. 75 (4): 532-537.
Malope, P., and E. Ransom. 2009.  Awareness and the perceived effects of the New Livestock and Meat Industries Act of 2006: a case study of Kgatleng and Kweneng districts, Botswana. Livestock Research for Rural Development. Volume 21, Article #169.  Retrieved October 28, 2009, from http://www.lrrd.org/lrrd21/10/malo21169.htm

Ph.D., Michigan State University
M.A., Michigan State University
B.A., Western Carolina University
Contact Information
(804) 289-8068
(804) 287-1278 (Fax)
Areas of Expertise
Globalization and development (Southern Africa)
Political economy of agriculture and food systems
Social studies of science and technology (especially in relation to the agriculture and food)
Gender and development
Sociology of sport