Division of Nutrition

Public Relations

Harvard Medical School and School of Public Health Activities

The Division of Nutrition at HMS coordinates activities with the Department of Nutrition at the Harvard School of Public Health and has a close working relationship with executives and research directors of major companies that produce nutritional products for the public. DON continues to sponsor symposia for industrial representatives to inform them of the depth of nutrition research at Harvard and the possibility of joint ventures on clinical projects.

Each year, the capital Division of Nutrition, in conjunction with the Nutrition Obesity Research Center at Harvard and the Department of Nutrition at the HSPH, sponsor a postgraduate symposium on a cutting edge topic. This summer (July 12-13, 2017) will be the 18th such post graduate course. The title of this year's symposium is Surgical Treatment of Obesity: Physiologic Mechanisms and Clinic Effects and will be held at the Joseph B. Martin Center at Harvard Medical School. In three sessions over two days, world class experts will consider the physiologic mechanisms of weight-loss surgery, health effects, and use of special populations. As with previous symposia, this symposium will be webcast and posted on the DON website. Titles of previous symposia are listed on our Events page.

The symposia have been well received by industry and have continued on an annual basis. In addition, several industrial representatives (Wyeth, Con Agra, Slim Fast, Dannon Yogurt, Coca Cola, Abbot Labs, etc.) have expressed an interest in supporting Division of Nutrition educational activities at HMS and to help develop a published curriculum on nutritional education from the Harvard Medical School for medical students throughout the USA. The resources generated from these sources are in an endowed account at Harvard Medical School for the Division of Nutrition.

Harvard Business School Activities

In addition to the DON initiatives to interact with industry, a program at the Harvard Business School overseen by Professor Ray Goldberg, Emeritus, the Moffett Professor of Agriculture and Business, has been established to identify ways for government, industry, business, academics, and nutritional science to work together to provide optimal nutrition for the public through legislation, manufacturing policies, and research. Drs. Walker, Willett, Bistrian, and Lo are members of this program.

The group meets annually to discuss issues and consider recommendations for legislation on changes in manufacturing that may provide the best possible nutrition for citizens. The Harvard School of Public Health has asked that a university-wide committee be established to make recommendations on nutrition at Harvard. Professor Ray Goldberg, who chairs that committee, acts as a member of the Advisory Committee for the Division of Nutrition at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Walker is a member and liaison with the Medical School.

Private and Public Science, Academic, and Consumer Food Policy Group (PAPSAC)

The Private and Public, Scientific, Academic, and Consumer Food Policy Group (PAPSAC), moderated by Professor Ray Goldberg, is a university-wide seminar to broaden communication among farmers, business leaders, scientists, public policy leaders, academics, not for profits, and consumer activists on topics of mutual concern to participants of the global food system and the society that it serves.

The Group has met annually since 1993 at Harvard and involves participants from the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, the Kennedy School of Government, the Law School, the Medical School, the Business School, and the School of Public Health. Some of the topics discussed include: global agricultural research; food policy; nutrition; agricultural technology; food safety; and the environmental impacts of agriculture. PAPSAC attendance is by invitation only. Discussions at the seminar are held off the record and each person speaks for themselves and not their government agency, academic institution, business, labor entity, not for profit foundation, or global institution.

See the Agenda for the November 2015 meeting.

See the Agenda for the November 2016 meeting.

Communication with the Public

In addition to an industry liaison, the Department of Nutrition has established links with patients and the lay public to communicate important new breakthroughs in nutrition prevention of disease and optimal nutrition for individuals of all ages, from infancy to old age.

We also work closely with Professor Lillian Cheung, Ph.D. in the Department of Nutrition at Harvard School of Public Health, an expert in communication to disseminate this information to the lay public. This is a major thrust of the newly established Division of Nutrition - Harvard Faculty & Staff Involved in Nutrition Related Research and Teaching.

Physicians in practice and the lay public can also gain information of nutrition through website links to the DON website.

The Nutrition Source

The Nutrition Source is a leading authority on food and nutrition knowledge, providing science-based guidance for healthy living. Based at the Harvard School of Public Health's Department of Nutrition, The Nutrition Source offers comprehensive nutrition information through timely articles and FAQ's, while recipes and tools, including The Healthy Eating Plate, facilitate the translation of food and nutrition knowledge into daily practice. With the media culture full of confusing nutrition misinformation, clinicians, health professionals, journalists, and the general public can rely and trust The Nutrition Source's clear and unbiased content.