Biography Deutsch


Parto Teherani-Krönner was born in Iran where she attended the German school in Teheran. After receiving her Abitur–a German university entrance diploma–she went to Berlin, Germany, to study Graphic Arts. In her final exam she developed a cooperative game for children in order to avoid the pressure of competition in group games for children.
She then became interested in social sciences and studied sociology, pedagogy, and economics of education at the Technical University of Berlin where she finished her MA in Development and Rural Sociology. After her research work at the Science Center in Berlin (WZB) with consultancy work about environmental problems of agriculture in EU countries and Germany she finished her PhD in Environmental Sociology, with a human and cultural ecological approach. After a short period of work with a women’s NGO in Berlin, “Flotte Lotte,” she got the position of an assistant lecturer in rural sociology in 1991 at the Technical University of Berlin.
In the early 90s she initiated, introduced, and established the Women and Gender Studies in Rural Areas as an innovative subject of research and teaching within an agricultural university in a German speaking country. In 1994, she became senior lecturer and head of the ‘Centre of Women’s Studies in Rural Aras’ at the Faculty of Agriculture and Horticulture (FAH). Since 2006 it became possible to establish the division of Gender & Globalization at FAH, promoted by the Center for Transdisciplinary Gender Studies of the Humboldt University of Berlin.
Parto’s fields of research are gender in rural development, and investigating the food security and food sovereignty debate in the international discourses. Based on her empirical work about gender in rural development and food security research in Asia and Africa, she has developed an innovative approach in this debate by introducing the cultural ecology of meals. The concept that she follows is the fact that people mostly do not eat raw agricultural products, but prepared meals. This process includes key questions such as what, who, why, when, where, and how? And with whom do people eat together. The concept of meal security that Parto has developed is a broad approach that examines the whole meal cycle. It includes the production as well as the reproduction sphere, the division of labor, and the gender and power structure regarding access and use of environmental resources. The embeddedness of food in the social and cultural system is a key to learn about the importance of meal preparation and sharing and the communication and social security system of a community.
Parto has conducted a number of field studies in Iran, Sudan, and Germany and supervised research work in India, Vietnam, Columbia, and Kenia. During the last decades, she has organized international summer schools in Omdurman, Sudan and Berlin, Germany, with participants from countries in Africa and Asia. She is involved in establishing a College of Human Ecology in Germany and has organized the summer universities in Emmendingen (near Freiburg), in 2015 and 2016, in cooperation with the College of the Atlantic in Maine, USA. The two-week summer program deals with projects about the future of sustainable food systems and food business.
She has given many lectures in different universities in Iran and conducted workshops with various participants from national and international organizations held in Teheran, Iran.
Following her retirement, she holds the position of a Guest Scientist at the Faculty of Life Sciences, division of Gender & Globalization at Humboldt University of Berlin. Since 2013, she is working as consultant to the research project HORTINLEA, “Diversifying Food Systems; Horticultural Innovations and Learning for Improved Nutrition and Livelihood in East Africa,” especially Kenya from a gender perspective and with regard to meal culture.

Parto is a member of the Scientific Board of the German Society for Human Ecology and member of the „Berliner Komitee für UNESCO Arbeit“. She is as well board member of the German Iranian Friendship Organization.