Matthew J. Zinsli is a PhD candidate in the Department of Community and Environmental Sociology and the International Development Studies Program. His research explores place-based food networks, rural development, and scientific discourses, expertise, and practices in international development projects.
Matthew is currently working on several projects exploring coffee production on the Galápagos Islands, which are regarded as a ‘natural laboratory’ of evolution and recognized as one of the world’s premier sites for ecosystem conservation and eco-tourism. The first is a co-authored paper with Samer Alatout analyzing the ontological struggles over coffee assessment in Ecuador’s creation of a denomination of origin label for the islands. The second is a sole-authored paper exploring the co-production of a terroir for coffee grown on the Galápagos Islands, in which policymakers and coffee producers produced and deployed knowledge of coffee to suit their interests in conservation and niche market creation, respectively.