Chelsea Wentworth

Chelsea Wentworth
Telephone: 517-432-0320

Department of Community Sustainability

Research Fellow

Dr. Chelsea Wentworth is a Research Fellow in the Department of Community Sustainability at Michigan State University. She is a medical and environmental anthropologist with interests in interests in food security and access, public health nutrition, urban agriculture, critical medical anthropology and gender and youth studies. Currently, she is working on the Flint Leverage Points project, a community-research partnership with the Community Foundation of Greater Flint and researchers in the Department of Community Sustainability at MSU. This research aims to map the food system in Flint to identify leverage points to improve food security and support evidence-based public policy. Additionally, since 2009 she has been engaged in research in Port Vila, Vanuatu, and the peri-urban areas around the city, where she works with public health practitioners and families on issues of infant and young child feeding practice, urban gardening and land use change, sustainability, and childhood malnutrition.

Chelsea received her Ph.D. in Anthropology with a dissertation titled “Feasting and Food Security: Negotiating infant and child feeding in urban and peri-urban Vanuatu” from the University of Pittsburgh where she also earned a Master of Public Health, and a certificate in Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies. Prior to joining MSU, she served as an Assistant Professor of Anthropology at High Point University, and as a qualitative research consultant for the Allegheny County Department of Human Services.


Ph.D. Anthropology, University of Pittsburgh, 2014
MPH Behavioral and Community Health Sciences, University of Pittsburgh, 2014
B.S. Environmental Studies and Applications, Michigan State University, 2007
B.A. English, Michigan State University, 2007

Selected Publications

2017 Wentworth, Chelsea. Hidden Circuits of Communal Childrearing: Nutritional Challenges Resulting from the Circulation of Children in Vanuatu. The Asia Pacific Journal of Anthropology. Judith Schachter and Chelsea Wentworth eds. for special issue 18(4): 323-338. DOI Permalink:

2017 Schachter, Judith and Chelsea Wentworth. The Dynamics of Mobility: New Perspectives on Child Circulation in the Pacific. The Asia Pacific Journal of Anthropology. Judith Schachter and Chelsea Wentworth eds. for special issue 18(4):289-304. DOI Permalink:

2017 Wentworth, Chelsea. Good Food, Bad Food, and White Rice: Understanding Child Feeding Using Visual-Narrative Elicitation. Medical Anthropology, 36(6): 602-614. DOI Permalink:

2016 Wentworth, Chelsea. Public Eating, Private Pain: Children, Feasting, and Food Security in Vanuatu. Food and Foodways, 24(3-4):1-17. DOI Permalink:

2016 Wentworth, Chelsea. Throwing the Mother out with the Bathwater: Vanuatu’s Breastfeeding Initiative in Theory and Practice. In Missing the Mark? Women and the Millennium Development Goals. Naomi M. McPherson ed. Demeter Press. Pp 234-263.

Tags: department of community sustainability, flint leverage points, research fellow

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