Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity


The Rudd Center was founded in 2005 by Kelly Brownell, PhD, with a contribution from the Rudd Foundation.

Early in its development, the faculty and staff at the Rudd Center undertook steps to begin a dialogue with key figures in the field, to review available knowledge on funding and its impact, and then to develop a clear set of guidelines contained in this document. Central to this process was the commissioning of a detailed background paper prepared by Amalia Waxman, formerly with the World Health Organization and current Head of the International Affairs and Public Relations Division of the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel. This document integrated information from many sources, including reports from organizations such as Corporate Accountability International, Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition, Yale University (guidelines on private-public partnerships and conflicts of interest), World Health Organization, and United Nations.

The second step was to convene a meeting, held at Yale University in August of 2005. The aim was to assemble leading people from around the world expert in science, private-public partnerships, business, law, and bioethics. Participants were chosen to represent differences of opinion on the primary issues, with the hope a consensus would emerge that would inform the Rudd Center on the optimal way of proceeding.

In 2015 the Rudd Center moved to the University of Connecitcut's Center for Health, Intervention and Prevention (CHIP).

The alignment between the University of Connecticut (UConn) and the Rudd Center provides a new platform for researchers to elevate their work on obesity, investigating such varied questions as: economic incentives and the role of marketing in food choices; genetic and neurophysiological moderators of risk for obesity; chemosensory perception in humans and how it influences food preference and intake; worksite health promotion programs; weight management interventions for adults and children; faith-based interventions; identifying food deserts and measuring health outcomes in those areas; effects of cholesterol-lowering medications on muscle performance; obesity prevention policies; and weight-based stigma and bullying.

For more information on the Rudd Center, please read our Funding Guidelines.