Luisa Gabriela Madrigal Marroquin

Grant Type

Dissertation Fieldwork Grant

Institutional Affiliation

Washington U.

Grant number

Gr. 10324

Approve Date

April 13, 2022

Project Title

Madrigal Marroquin, Luisa (Washington U., St. Louis) "Growing children to grow the economy: Corporate philanthropy and the prevention of childhood stunting in Guatemala"

Guatemala has the highest rate of childhood stunting in Latin America. Stunting, which refers to height that is two standard deviations below what is defined as normal, is considered to be an indicator of health and development. Besides being discussed as a health condition, the public discourse surrounding childhood stunting in Guatemala has racialized undertones. Maya children, part of the country’s indigenous majority, exhibit higher rates of stunting. Childhood stunting is now commonly cited by public and private actors as a main reason for the country’s lack of economic development. Corporate actors have adopted this perspective as well, viewing childhood stunting as an obstacle to their own economic growth and broader processes of national development. The country’s largest corporations are channeling funds through their philanthropies to support nutrition interventions they say will promote human and economic growth and development. My research involves fieldwork with corporate executives, public health officials, corporate philanthropy administrators and fieldworkers, and targeted beneficiaries in order to investigate the ways in which corporate philanthropy generates and disseminates knowledge claims about childhood stunting and how those relate to race, how proposed solutions are operationalized as interventions, and how these interventions are lived and experienced by their targeted beneficiaries.