Aarhus University Seal

Barbara Vad Andersen

Tenure Track Assistant Professor, Assistant Professor, Teaching Assistant Professor

Barbara Vad Andersen


Research focus: The big question that drive my research is: How is human appetite and eating behaviour shaped? More specifically, what are the contributions of homeostatic and hedonic drivers, the food’s sensory properties and the surrounding eating context to human eating? And, how do the drivers shape -and can be utilized in shaping healthier sustainable eating behaviors?

To answer these questions, I have a track record of managing multidisciplinary research projects, integrating sensory & consumer science with food science, behavioural psychology, sociology, pedagogy, as well as endocrinology and neuroscience.  I believe that eating behavioural changes needs to be grounded in pleasure, and therefore, a huge part of my research is devoted to understanding the subjective pleasurable elements of eating experiences, both from a fundamental perspective and at the applicable end of the research spectrum. My research is conducted amongst consumers from different segments and cultures, and I apply both quantitative as well as qualitative methods to answer my research questions. Amongst my collaborators are researchers from a broad spectrum of scientific disciplines, health and food professionals and industry.  


Teaching focus: Alongside my research activities, I have a passion for teaching and learning. I am the coordinator of the Sino-Danish Center (SDC) MSc Programme ‘International Food Quality & Health’, where I administrate teaching activities in a cross-cultural context and in collaboration with the mother organization, SDC, the course responsibles, teachers, students and external collaborators. Further, I am responsible for two courses ‘Food Science’ (AU) and ‘Food Quality Perception & Eating Behaviour (SDC), conduct teaching activities both at AU, KU and SDC. I sit on educational committees at AU, SDC and VIA University College, and provide supervision of a range of BSc, MSc and PhD students.


Board memberships: Nationally, I am on the board of the ‘Danish Sensory Society’ and ‘IDA Food Network’, where we conduct arrangements for members focusing on knowledge exchange and networking . Internationally, I am the Danish co-representative and board member of the ‘European Sensory Science Society’, where we collaborate and integrate research activities across Europe, and plan the scientific conference Eurosense.   


Educational career path: My scientific background is in the cross-field between Nutrition & Health, and Sensory & Consumer Science. During my master thesis studies at University of Copenhagen, I specialized in the area of ‘food preference formation’. This was the start to a combined focus on nutrition and well-being to understand human eating behaviour. I continued down this path in my PhD studies, which I completed within Sensory & Consumer Science at The National Food Institute, DTU, in 2015. The  title of the PhD thesis was “Sensory factors in food satisfaction -an understanding of the satisfaction term and a measurement of factors involved in sensory- and food satisfaction”. After the PhD, I became affiliated at Aarhus University, where I in 2021 was appointed Tenure Track Assistant Professor in Sensory & Consumer Science. Here, I manage the group’s research activities on Appetite & Eating Behaviour.



Core competences

  • Creation and management of interdisciplinary research projects

Key words: Sensory & Consumer Science in combination with neuroscience, endocrinology, sociology and pedagogy, and food industries and practitioners

  • Planning, conducting, analysing and reporting scientific research aiming at understanding and affecting the human appetite and eating behaviour within the area of Sensory & Consumer Science

Key scientific profile: Appetite and satiety/satiation; satisfaction/pleasure/well-being; consumers across the life span; quantitative and qualitative methods.

  • Education management

Key words: Principal coordinator of the MSc Programme ‘International Food Quality and Health’, course responsible for the MSc course ‘Food Quality Perception and Eating Behaviour’ and ‘Food Science’, and member of educational committees at AU, SDC and VIA.

  • Teaching and supervision

Key words: Course responsible and Teacher at MSc and BSc Programmes at AU, KU and SDC. Supervision of BSc-, MSc- and PhD students.

  • Organising food and education-oriented seminars for researchers, health professionals, students and consumers

Key words: Planning and conducting professional events, seminars, and conferences nationally and internationally. Knowledge exchange, networking and international collaboration.



View all (100) »

  • Appetite (Journal)

    Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial work typesPeer review of manuscriptsResearch

  • Food Quality and Preference (Journal)

    Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial work typesPeer review of manuscriptsResearch

  • Appetite (Journal)

    Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial work typesPeer review of manuscriptsResearch

View all (159) »

ID: 84446425