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Academic Profile - Dr Kelly Donati


Dr Kelly Donati coordinates and lectures in Australia's first Bachelor of Food Studies and Master of Food Systems and Gastronomy in the Faculty of Higher Education. Her teaching responsibilities focus on gastronomy, food cultures, discourses of diet and health, the micro-politics of fermentation and community food systems. Her research explores the convivial and lively co-productive collaborations between humans and nonhumans in small-scale farming practices. She has published widely in the areas of multispecies gastronomy, community gardens, farmers markets and the politics of Slow Food. In 2019/2020, she was a Rachel Carson Fellow at Ludwig Maximilian University in Munich, Germany. She is proud to be the founding Chairperson of Sustain: the Australian Food Network, a not-for-profit organisation which undertakes research, policy work and projects to design and build better food systems.


  • Doctor of Philosophy, University of Melbourne, Faculty of Science/Department of Geography, 2016
  • Master of Arts (Gastronomy), University of Adelaide, Faculty of Arts/School of History and Politics, 2004
  • Master of Arts, Monash University, Faculty of Arts/Centre for Comparative Literature and Cultural Studies, 2002
  • Bachelor of Arts (Double Major - Cultural Studies and Women’s Studies), McGill University, Faculty of Arts/Department of English Literature, 1995

Contact details

T: +613 9606 2325

Areas of expertise

  • Multispecies gastronomy
  • Fermentation and microbial studies
  • Urban agriculture and edible gardening in cities


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List of research publications

Dr Kelly Donati's research publications


  • Donati, K. & Rose, N. (2020). "Every seed I plant is a wish for tomorrow" Findings and Action Agenda from the 2020 National Pandemic Gardening Survey. Sustain: the Australian Food Network.
  • Donati, K. and Pike, Lucinda. (2007). Community Gardens: Benefits, Challenges and Governance. Commissioned by The Hornery Institute.

Other Writing

  • Donati, K. (2011). 'For the love of farming' [book review of Deeply Rooted: Unconventional Farmers in the Age of Agribusiness]. Australian Humanities Review. 51.
  • Donati, K. (2010). Melbourne 2030: Super-sized Sustainability. Plane Tree: Journal of the Graduate Student Association. 16(1), 8-12.
  • 2009-2013, Monthly food column for Langtons Wine Magazine.


Teaching Responsibilities

  • Bachelor of Food Studies: Fermenting Cultures, Gastronomic Approaches to Food Studies, Culture and Cuisine, Diet and Health in Society, Community Food Systems in Practice
  • Master of Food Systems and Gastronomy: Gastronomic Discourse and Culture, Food and Urbanism, Knowledge and Knowing, Decolonising Food Systems

Academic/Professional Awards

  • Rachel Carson Fellowship, 2019/2020
  • Hautes Etudes du Goût Scholarship (Le Cordon Bleu)
  • LFR Anna M. White Scholarship (University of Melbourne)
  • PhD scholarship, University of Melbourne Departmental Award

Professional Memberships

  • Founding board member of Sustain: the Australian Food Network