Centre for Food Policy Research
  1. PhD students
Food Policy

Harvey Ells

PhD work

Street food markets and consumer wellbeing: a study of developed urban city centres.


  • Part-time PhD research student, Centre for Food Policy, City University London
  • MA Learning and Development, University of Brighton
  • MSc Food Policy, City University London

Harvey teaches full-time at the University of Brighton's School of Sport and Service Management in Eastbourne.

Prior to his academic post he held a range of management positions for UK based national food retailers.

The study

Harvey EllsSince the emergence of supermarkets as the dominant force in developed urban food supply chains there have been significant changes to the way that foods are sourced, purchased and consumed within cities. A consequence of this market concentration is that there has been a reduction in the number of independent food retail actors. This has resulted in the wider benefits of traditional food street markets being gradually eroded. In addition to aiding the supply of food to urban populations it can be argued that these retail formats also facilitate consumer wellbeing from a range of economic, social, educational and psychological perspectives. This study seeks to investigate from a customers' perspective at a range of locations, the ways in which the processes, customs and practices of retailing in food street markets can contribute to consumer wellbeing and the creation of retail related social capital. 

Why it matters for food policy

It is anticipated that the findings of this study will seek to inform future developments and debates centred on urban food policy, access and security, town centre management policy and the related urban planning agenda. It will also offer insights in to the experiential dimensions of fresh food retailing. 


Chambers L, Ells H, Yeomans, MR. Can the satiating power of a high energy beverage be improved by manipulating sensory characteristics and label information? Food Quality and Preference. 2012; In press.

Current Research Projects 

BBSRC project funded through the DRINC inititiative: "Maximising satiety through manipulating expectations, sensory quality and nutrient content".

ESRC and TSB funded Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) To devise and implement a retail strategy incorporating innovative retail models for the charity sector informed by mainstream retail and e-commerce best practice. Partnership number 8985

Research interests

Higher Education service quality, food street markets/ Pop-Up retailing, retail SMEs, retail branding, community food projects, sustainable food supply chains and UK urban agricultural policy.