Nora McKeon studied history at Harvard and political science at the Sorbonne before joining the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations. She held positions of increasing responsibility there, culminating in the overall direction of the FAO’s relations with civil society. A major area of her work over the years was strengthening civil society/social movement participation in field programmes and in policy dialogue, with particular attention to organizations of small food producers as the mandated representatives of those most affected by food insecurity yet most distant from decision-making that affects them.
She now divides her time between research, teaching, and advocacy around food systems, food governance, small-scale producer movements, and UN-civil society relations. She is closely following current developments in global food governance, particularly the Committee on World Food Security. She lectures in the Masters Course on Human Development and Food Security at Rome 3 University and in other universities in Italy and the US.