Research Team

Dr Ismael Blanco

Principal Investigator of TRANSGOB. He has been Ramon y Cajal Senior Research Fellow. He is currently Lecturer at the Department of Political Science and Public Law and at the Institute of Government and Public Policy (IGOP / UAB). His current research focuses on the socio-spatial impacts of the crisis in cities and on the emergent forms of social participation and urban governance in this context. He is the co-editor (with Steven Griggs and Helen Sullivan) of the special issue “Explaining local governance ‘transformation’ through neoliberalism”, Urban Studies, November 2014, 51(15).


Dr Oscar Rebollo

Lecturer in Sociology at the UAB. He has been Director of the IGOP. He is currently Director of Community Action Service of the City Council of Barcelona. His research focuses on community action, citizen engagement and urban and social inequalities.




Rubén Martínez

Bachelor in Fine Arts (UB) and Masters degree in Political Science and Social Transformation at the Autonomous University of Barcelona. FPI Fellowship Grant linked with TRANSGOB research, he is currently doing his PhD at the IGOP. His research focuses on the analysis of public policies that foster social innovation, its articulation with community based processes and changes in the social power relations.



 Dr Marc Parés

Marie Curie Researcher of the Institute of Government and public policy at the UAB. PhD in environmental science and a degree in both environmental sciences and political sciences from the UAB, has been professor of the Geography Department of the same University and a visiting researcher at the New York University (2014-2015), the University of Manchester (2007-2009) and the Sussex University (2003). His fields of research are urban governance, citizen participation, social innovation and the political ecology. Is the Coordinator of the Research Group on Urban Governance, Commons, Internet and Social Innovation (URGOCIS).



Dr Jonathan Davies

Professor of Critical Policy Studies in the Department of Politics and Public Policy at De Montfort University. His first monograph Partnerships and regimes: the politics of urban regeneration in the UK was published by Ashgate in 2001. His second, Challenging Governance Theory: from Networks to Hegemony was published by The Policy Press in September 2011. His research interests span critical issues in governance, urban studies and public policy. He recently won a major ESRC grant, leading an international consortium of researchers in a comparative study of austerity governance in eight countries.

Ed Thompson

Completing doctoral student at DMU. His research focuses on the synthesis of Actor-Network Theory and an ethnographic methodology to explore the practice of collaboration in the planning for and responding to crises, and the role of highly inscribed boundary objects in situations of uncertainty. Other areas of research include the investigation of public participation in democratic processes from those who are a part of disenfranchised groups such as the homeless and those in care.



Dr Julio Alguacil Gómez

Professor of Sociology at Universidad Carlos III and also directing and collaborating on several post graduate courses, seminars, and master’s degrees offered at various Spanish institutions and universities. He is member of various scientific committees and editorial boards of scientific reviews such as Documentación Social, Cuadernos de Investigación Urbanística (UPM), Polis (Universidad Bolivariana de Chile) or Hábitat y Sociedad Urbanismo (Universidad Sevilla)


Dr Andrés Walliser Martínez

Holds a PHD in Sociology and is currently carrying out teaching activities at New York University in Madrid. He is an associate professor at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM) in the Sociology Department II. He is also a professor of Master and Postgraduate courses at the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, the Universidad Carlos III, and at the Hertie School of Governance in Berlin. He is a scientific committee member of the Urban Research and Practice journal.


Dra María Velasco González

Holds a PhD in Political Science and is a Professor of Political Science and Administration II in the Department of Political Sciences at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM). She also holds a degree in Law and a Bachelor in Political Science and Public Administration from UCM. Her research responds to two lines of interest: 1) the functioning of political institutions and public policies as a theoretical field, and 2) urban policy, tourism and culture as the object of a specific analysis.


Rosa de la Fuente

Graduated in Political Sciences at the Complutense University of Madrid in 1996. She obtained her PhD Degree at the same University (2005) in the field of Latin American Studies with a thesis about Indigenous Autonomy Demands in Chiapas, México, which obtained an European Mention of Excellence and a Doctoral Research Award (2008). Finally it was published under the title “La autonomía indígena en Chiapas. Un nuevo imaginario socio-espacial”, Editorial La Catarata (2008).


Francisco Ochoa Casariego

Obtained a Bachelor in Political Science & Public Administration from the UCM. He holds a Master degree in Regional and Population Studies from the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona and a Master in Participatory Research for Local Development. He is a doctoral student at UCM where his doctoral thesis, directed by Rosa de la Fuente, focuses on the study of the participatory policies in Madrid from an urban governance perspective. He combines his research with his collaborative work in social intervention as a mediator and as a driving force behind various neighborhood projects in Madrid and Bogota.



Dr Valeria Guarneros-Meza

Lecturer in Public Policy, De Montfort University, UK: Understanding changes in local governance have driven Valeria’s career to date. Her interests have focused on the impact that structural economic changes and institutional socio-political reforms have on local governance. Democratic principles such as citizen participation, inclusion and accountability have also drawn her attention and, in particular, how these concepts and meanings affect the organisational structures of local government as well as the practices and behaviour of local government bureaucrats.

Dr Madeleine Pill

Lecturer in Public Policy, University of Sydney.  Madeleine’ s research focuses on urban and neighbourhood governance and policy, taking a comparative perspective with a particular emphasis on the UK and US. She has conducted extensive research into neighbourhood governance, including a comparative investigation in Baltimore and Bristol; an assessment of approaches in London; development of the evidence base for policy approaches in Wales; and regarding the implications of England’s localism agenda.



Dr Asier Blas Mendoza

Earned a Bachelors and PHD in Political Science from the University of the Basque Country (UPV/EHU). Since 2006 he has been a professor in the department of Political Science and Administration where, in addition to teaching duties, his line of research centers around democracy models, citizen participation and democratic innovation, and management of ethnic and national conflicts.


Tania Martínez Portugal

Received a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science and Public Administration from the University of the Basque Country (UPV/EHU), and a Master of Research of Globalization and Development at the Graduate Institute HEGOA in Local and Sustainable Development. She has been an active social researcher, both inside and outside of the Academy. Currently, she is pursuing a doctorate in the Department of Political Science and Public Administration at UPV where she takes part in a research group on participatory democracy called Parte Hartuz.


Dr Imanol Telleria Herrera

Since 2008, Dr. Imanol Telleria Herrera has been a professor of Political Science and Administration at University of the Basque Country (UPV/EHU) and part of the research team Parte Hartuz on participatory democracy.  He is also the director of the official Master of Participation and Community Development at UPV. He has a Bachelor in Sociology and his PhD in Political Science. His research interests focus on the role of urban social movements, as well as other experiences of citizen participation at the local level.


Dr Rafa Ajángiz

PhD Political Science, senior lecturer at the University of the Basque Country, working on public policies, mobilization, citizen participation and gender issues.



Research Team

Ramon Canal

Bachelor and Masters degree in Political Science and Public Administration from the Autonomous University of Barcelona, where he is currently doing his PhD on the transformation of localism in Europe. He also did studies in Political Science, Public Law and Economy at the University of Freiburg (Germany). Having worked for a long time for a local authority, as a policy advisor and as a public manager. He has been  researcher of the IGOP. He is currently Director of the Planning and Studies Office of the City Council of Barcelona.


Dra Helena Cruz

PhD in Geography at the Autonomous University of Barcelona and Master in Urban Management at the Erasmus University of Rotterdam. She is currently researcher at the Institute of Government and Publicy Policy. Her research interests are urban policies and social mobilization, focusing on urban and spatial planning, governance, land-use conflicts, social movements and social innovation.



Yunailis Salazar

Bachelor in Political Science at the Central University of Venezuela and Masters Degree in Social Policies and Community Mediation at the Autonomous University of Barcelona. She is currently researcher at the Institute of Government and Public Policy. Her research interest is the social innovation in the public sector and social participation.




Dra Vivien Lowndes

Professor Vivien Lowndes undertakes research, teaching and knowledge transfer on local governance and public services, with a particular interest in partnerships, citizen participation, and gender issues.  Vivien Lowndes previously worked at the University of Nottingham, University of Essex and De Montfort University, where she was Pro Vice Chancellor (Research).  Vivien worked in local government and the voluntary sector before coming into academia.  She was Deputy Chair of the Politics and International Studies Sub-Panel in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (the UK’s national research assessment exercise). Vivien has also acted as a Special Adviser to the House of Commons Public Administration Select Committee.  Currently she is researching the development of Combined Authorities in the context of devolution, local government responses to austerity, Police and Crime Commissioners’ gender policies, and the use of evidence in migration policy. She is also engaged in comparative research analysing innovative governance institutions in the UK and Brazil.