John F.


H.E. Babcock Professor of Food & Nutrition Economics and Policy
Division of Nutritional Sciences
Cornell Institute for Public Affairs

305 Savage Hall


John Hoddinott is the H.E. Babcock Professor of Food and Nutrition Economics and Policy, Cornell University. Before coming to Cornell in 2015, he was a Deputy Division Director at the International Food Policy Research Institute, Washington DC. His research focuses on the causes and consequences of poverty, hunger and undernutrition in developing countries. He has been heavily involved in primary data collection through living in a mud hut in western Kenya and a small town near Timbuktu Mali in addition to his work in Bangladesh, Cote d’Ivoire, Ethiopia, Guatemala, Kenya, Mali, Namibia, Niger and Zimbabwe.

John has ongoing research work in three countries: Bangladesh, Ethiopia and Guatemala. The Bangladesh and Ethiopian studies focus on agriculture, social protection, food security and nutrition. These are a mix of prospective cohort and randomized control trials. The Guatemala study is a follow up to a randomized community nutrition intervention that was fielded in the early 1970s.


John is interested in the causes of poverty, food insecurity and undernutrition, and the design and evaluation of interventions that would reduce these. He has also undertaken work on poverty dynamics, intrahousehold resource allocation, schooling, labour markets aid allocation and on improving survey methods.

John's current research interests focus on the links between economics (especially social protection, agriculture and gender), food security and early life nutrition. He has ongoing collaborative projects in Bangladesh, Ethiopia and Guatemala. 

K. Hirvonen and J. Hoddinott, forthcoming, “Beneficiary views on cash and in-kind payments: Evidence from Ethiopia’s Productive Safety Net Programme”, World Bank Economic Review.

E. Knippenberg, D. Jolliffe and J. Hoddinott, forthcoming, "Land Fragmentation and Food Insecurity in Ethiopia", American Journal of Agricultural Economics.

Behrman, J, J. Hoddinott and J. Maluccio, forthcoming. Nutrition, adult cognitive skills and productivity: Results and influence of the Oriente Longitudinal Study, Food and Nutrition Bulletin.

S. Roy, M. Hidrobo, J. Hoddinott and A. Ahmed, 2019, “Transfers, behavior change communication, and intimate partner violence: Post-program evidence from rural Bangladesh”, Review of Economics and Statistics 101(5): 865-877.

M. Santoso, R. Kerr, J. Hoddinott, P. Garigipati, S. Olmos and S. Young, 2019, “What is the role of women’s empowerment in child nutrition outcomes? A systematic review”, Advances in Nutrition, 10(6): 1138-1151.

D. Headey, K. Hirvonen, J. Hoddinott and D. Stifel, 2019, "Rural food markets and child nutrition”, American Journal of Agricultural Economics, 101(5): 1311-1327. [Lead article].

D. Headey, K. Hirvonen and J. Hoddinott, 2018, “Animal sourced foods and child stunting”, American Journal of Agricultural Economics, 100(5): 1302-1319.

J. Hoddinott, S. Sandström and J. Upton, 2018, “The impact of cash and food transfers: Evidence from a randomized intervention in Niger”, American Journal of Agricultural Economics, 100(4): 1032-1049.

N. D. Ford, J. Behrman, J. Hoddinott, J. Maluccio, R. Martorell, M. Ramirez-Zea and A. D. Stein, 2018, “Exposure to improved nutrition from conception to age 2 y and adult cardiometabolic disease risk”, Lancet Global Health, 6(8): e875-e884. :

M. Hidrobo, J. Hoddinott, N. Kumar and M. Olivier, 2018, “Social protection, food security and assets”, World Development, 101: 88-103.

J. Hoddinott, 2018, “The investment case for folic acid fortification in developing countries”, Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 1414(1): 72-81. :

J. Hoddinott, I. Ahmed, A. Ahmed and S. Roy, 2017. “Behavior change communication activities and their impact on infant and young child nutrition knowledge and practice of neighboring non-participants in rural Bangladesh”, PLoS One. :

K. Hirvonen and J. Hoddinott, 2017. “Agricultural production and children’s diets: Evidence from rural Ethiopia”, Agricultural Economics, 49(4): 469-480. :

K. Hirvonen, J. Hoddinott, B. Minten and D. Stifel, 2017. “Children’s diets, nutrition knowledge, and access to markets", World Development, 95: 303-315. :

J. Hoddinott, D. Headey, and M. Dereje, 2015. “Cows, missing milk markets and nutrition in rural Ethiopia,” Journal of Development Studies, 51(8): 958-975.

D. Headey, J. Hoddinott, D. Ali, R. Tesfaye and M. Dereje, 2015. “The other Asian enigma: Explaining the rapid reduction of malnutrition in Bangladesh”, World Development, 66(2): 749-761.

M. Hidrobo, J. Hoddinott, A. Peterman, A. Margolies, and V. Moreira, 2014 “Cash, food, or vouchers? Evidence from a randomized experiment in Northern Ecuador” Journal of Development Economics, 107: 144-156.

J. Hoddinott, J. Maluccio, J. Behrman, R. Martorell, Paul Melgar, Agnes R. Quisumbing, Manuel Ramirez-Zea, Aryeh D. Stein, and Kathryn M. Yount, 2013. “Adult consequences of growth failure in early childhood,” American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 98: 1170-1178.

J. Hoddinott, H. Alderman, J. Behrman, L. Haddad and S. Horton, 2013. “The economic rationale for investing in stunting reduction”, Maternal and Child Nutrition, 9(Suppl 2): 69-82.

A. de Brauw and J. Hoddinott, 2011. “Must Conditional Cash Transfer Programs be conditioned to be effective? The impact of conditioning transfers on school enrollment in Mexico,” Journal of Development Economics, 96(2): 359-370.  doi:10.1016/j.jdeveco.2010.08.014.

S. Dercon, D. Gilligan, J. Hoddinott and T. Woldehanna. 2009. “The impact of roads and agricultural extension on consumption growth and poverty in fifteen Ethiopian villages,” American Journal of Agricultural Economics 91(4): 1007-1021.  DOI:

J. Maluccio, J. Hoddinott, J. Behrman, R. Martorell, A. Quisumbing, and A. Stein, 2009. “The impact of nutrition during early childhood on education among Guatemalan Adults, Economic Journal 119(April): 734-763.  DOI:

J. Hoddinott, J. Maluccio, J. Behrman, R. Flores and R. Martorell, 2008, “Effect of a nutrition intervention during early childhood on economic productivity in Guatemalan adults”, The Lancet 371:  411-416. DOI:

H. Alderman, J. Hoddinott and B. Kinsey, 2006, “Long term consequences of early childhood malnutrition”, Oxford Economic Papers 58(3): 450-474.   DOI:

J. Hoddinott, 2006. “Shocks and their consequences across and within households in rural Zimbabwe”, Journal of Development Studies 42(2): 301-321.   DOI:

S. Dercon, J. Hoddinott and T. Woldehanna, 2005. “Shocks and consumption in 15 Ethiopian Villages, 1999-2004”, Journal of African Economies 14(4): 559-585.  DOI:

J. Behrman and J. Hoddinott, 2005. “Program evaluation with unobserved heterogeneity and selective implementation: The Mexican Progresa impact on child nutrition”, Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, 67: 547-569.  DOI:

D. Coady, M. Grosh and J. Hoddinott, 2004. “Targeting outcomes redux”, World Bank Research Observer, 19(1): 61-85.

J. Hoddinott and B. Kinsey, 2001. “Child growth in the time of drought”, Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, 63(4): 409-436. [Lead article]  DOI:

B. Baulch and J. Hoddinott, 2000. “Economic mobility and poverty dynamics in developing countries”, Journal of Development Studies, 36(6): 1-24. [Lead article]  DOI:

C. Udry, J. Hoddinott, L. Haddad and H. Alderman, 1995. “Gender differentials in farm productivity: Implications for household efficiency and agricultural policy”, Food Policy, 20(5): 407-423.  DOI:

J. Hoddinott and L. Haddad, 1995. “Does female income share influence household expenditures? Evidence from Côte d'Ivoire”, Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, 57(1): 77-96.

H. Alderman, P.A. Chiappori. L. Haddad, J. Hoddinott and S.M.R. Kanbur, 1995. “Unitary versus collective household models: Time to shift the burden of proof?” World Bank Research Observer, 10(1): 1-19. [Lead article].

J. Hoddinott, 1994. “A model of migration and remittances applied to western Kenya” Oxford Economic Papers, 46(3): 459-476.


John's professional activities focus primarily on ongoing research collaborations in Bangladesh and Ethiopia. On addition, he is a Managing Editor of the Journal of African Economies, an Associate Editor of Economics and Human Biology and serves on the editorial boards of Agricultural and Resource Economics Review and Journal of Development Studies. Since 2016, he has been part of the NEUDC Program Committee.

John teaches a joint undergraduate/graduate course on the economics of food and malnutrition. This course is designed to bridge economics and nutrition and mixes lectures, class discussions, writing assignments and engagement with data.

NS 4480/6480: Economics of food and malnutrition, Spring 2019

AEM 4485/6485: Economics of food and malnutrition, Spring 2019

AEM/ECON 7650: Development microeconomics graduate research seminar, Spring 2019

NS 7030: Seminar in Nutritional Sciences, Spring 2019

NS 7030: Seminar in Nutritional Sciences, Fall 2019


Guest lectures

NS 6200: Translational research and evidence-based policy and practice in nutrition, Spring 2019



1986 - 1989        D. Phil. (Economics), University of Oxford.

1984 - 1986        M.A. (Economics), York University, Canada.

1980 - 1984        B.A. (Honours, Economics), University of Toronto, Canada.

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