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Cooking to Save Your Life!

As the world is besieged by a global media obsessed with all things food, ironically more and more people are cooking less at home. Tacit knowledge of preparing our food once learned from mothers and grandmothers today comes as ever more detailed instructions.

Join us at the Kitchen Table with Nobel Prize-winning economist and author Abhijit Banerjee who teams up with his illustrator Cheyenne Olivier to share his experiences as an economist with an ingenious and exciting take on cooking. Everyone can cook, he says; cooking is as much a method as instinct, presence, ingenuity, need, and scarcity.

Abhijit Banerjee could not be at our Kitchen Table at a more opportune moment as billions are facing food poverty and soaring food prices that underpin the complexities of our food systems and the global reality of food insecurity. He notes: "The word economics comes from the ancient Greek word oikonomia, or 'management of a household'. Economists are trained to think about how to make the most of limited resources and that instinct drives what we do in the household as much as anywhere else." Acclaimed for introducing medical research paradigms to understanding the world's poor, Banerjee puts the human factor into economics: "As anybody who has ever spent time with actual poor people knows, eating something special is a source of great excitement for them, as it is for me.Cooking, feeding, hospitality and the joy of a tasty meal are universal".

The best meals are good stories. Join us for this lively dialogue with Banerjee and Olivier, spanning gastronomy, economics, and most importantly, human behavior and cooking!

Abhijit Vinayak Banerjee is the Ford Foundation International Professor of Economics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. In 2003 he co-founded the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL) with Esther Duflo and Sendhil Mullainathan, and he remains one of the Lab’s Directors. Banerjee is a fellow of the National Academy of Sciences, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the Econometric Society. He is a winner of the Infosys Prize and a co-recipient of the 2019 Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel for his groundbreaking work in development economics research.

Cheyenne Olivier is a French illustrator based in the Basque Country. She playfully builds her images from squares, circles and triangles. She illustrated Abhijit Banerjee’s cookbook Cooking To Save Your Life and she collaborated with Esther Duflo on a series of children’s picture books about poverty, published in France in 2022 and soon to be published in India. While working for newspapers like The New York Times, Condé Nast Traveller and Times Of India, she continues her PhD in children’s literature and illustration at the University of Tours and the Orléans Art and Design School.

This conversation has been organised and will be moderated by Priya Mani.

PLEASE NOTE: This session will be audio-recorded. You'll need to log in to the website when purchasing a ticket if you would like to access the recording (it will be available a few days after the session).

And yes, of course, as usual at this time of the year, we got tangled up in the different daylight saving-summer-winter-whatever-timezones, and 5.00pm GMT translates to 6pm Berlin, 10am San Francisco and 1pm New York😁

Zoom Event Details

14th March 2023
5:00 pm GMT


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