Marcia Vera EspinozaDr Marcia A. Vera Espinoza

Postdoctoral Research Associate, MIGPROSP Project

Contact Details
Telephone: +44 (0) 114 222 1652
Room: Elmfield Lodge



Dr Marcia Vera Espinoza joined the Department of Politics in December 2015, as a postdoctoral research associate in the "Prospects for International Migration Governance" (MIGPROSP) project led by Professor Andrew Geddes.

Marcia pursued her undergraduate studies in Journalism and Social Communication at the University of Chile and then moved to Sheffield, where she completed her MA in International Studies and PhD in Human Geography. Her PhD research, awarded in 2016, explored the experiences of resettlement and integration of Palestinian and Colombian refugees in Chile and Brazil, and analysed the extent and ways in which the resettlement programme is implemented in South America.

Dr Vera Espinoza’s current research post is part of the ERC funded MIGPROSP project, aimed to develop comparative regional analysis of the micro-political foundations of the governance of international migration and assessing their implications for adaptation and change in these governance systems. The project focuses on the context within which decisions are made about migration in governance systems in four world regions (Europe, North America, South America and Asia-Pacific) and explores implications for institutional change.

Research interests: forced migration, refugee integration, citizenship, belonging, migration governance, Latin America, development.


My teaching places students as main actors of their learning experience. They are encouraged to develop critical thinking while they take the lead in constructing scenarios that allow them to ground ideas, theoretical frameworks and methodologies to praxis. I value and recognize students’ professional and personal experiences as pivotal in developing their knowledge and independence of thought. In my modules, I encourage active participation, reflexive practices and the development of various academic and professional skills. My research-led teaching aims to foster critical thinking around the complexities and multiple-levels and actors involved in migration dynamics and governance.

In 2017-2018, I am co-teaching a module in the Global Political Economy MA, “Business, Labour and Migration” with Genevieve LeBaron. At the Politics Department I also taught the MA module POL6003: The Politics of Global Migration (Module Leader 2015 – 2017) and the level 3 undergraduate module POL3147: The Politics of Asylum.

I have also taught in the Department of Geography and for the Faculty of Social Sciences:

Level 1 Modules:
2015 GEO163 Information and Communication Skills for Geographers – GTA
2012 - 2015 GEO151 Qualitative Research Methods in Human Geography - GTA
2015 - 2016 The State of Sheffield Challenge, Faculty of Social Sciences.

Level 3 Modules:
2015 GEO336 Development & Global Change – GTA

PhD Modules – Faculty of Social Sciences:
2014 – 2015 FCS670 Qualitative Methods for Social Science Research – GTA
2015 – 2016 FCS6100 Research Ethics and Integrity – Seminar Tutor


Key Projects

Marcia is a Research Associate, since December 2015, in the MIGPROSP project:

Prospects for International Migration Governance (MIGPROSP)

Awarding Body: European Research Council Advanced Grants scheme
Principal Investigator: Professor Andrew Geddes

Grants and Awards

  • SIID-ESRC Fellowship (2014)
  • Slawson Award, Royal Geographical Society with IBG (2013)
  • Society for Latin American Studies (SLAS) Postgraduate Travel Award (2012)
  • CONICYT Becas Chile PhD Scholarship (2011)
  • University of Sheffield International Scholarship (2008)
  • CONICYT MA Studentship (2008)

In 2014 Marcia was awarded one of eight SIID-ESRC fellowships to be part of the project Latin American Perspectives on the Post-2015 Development Agenda that aimed to identify the main priorities, barriers and opportunities that the SDGs agenda represented for the region. Previously, she was research assistant in the ID100 project, a participatory exercise that contributed to the discussion on the post-2015 development agenda through the identification of 100 key questions in international development.

Publications and Papers


  • Vera Espinoza, M. (2018) The Limits and Opportunities of Regional Solidarity: Exploring Refugee Resettlement in Brazil and Chile. Global Policy, 9(1): 85-94. DOI:10.1111/1758-5899.12534
  • Vera Espinoza, M. 2017. Extra-regional refugee resettlement in South America: the Palestinian experience, in Forced Migration Review (56) 47-49.
  • Geddes A. and Vera Espinoza, M. (2018) Framing Understandings of International Migration: How Governance Actors Make Sense of Migration in Europe and South America. In Margueritis, A. (Ed), Shaping Migration between Europe and Latin America. New Approaches and Challenges. London: ILAS publications. ISBN-13: 978-1-908857-45-3
  • Vera Espinoza, M. (In press, August 2018) The Politics of Resettlement: Expectations and unfulfilled promises in Chile and Brazil. In Garnier, A, Lyra Jubilut, L. and Bergtora Sandvik, K. (Eds), Refugee Resettlement: Power, Politics and Humanitarian Governance. New York: Berghahn Books. ISBN: 978-1-78533-944-8
  • Oldekop, J., Fontana, L., Grugel, J., Roughton, N., Adu, E.A., Bird, G., Wallin, S., Dorgan, A., Vera Espinoza, M., Hammett, D., et al. (2016) '100 key research questions for the post-2015 development agenda,'. Development Policy Review. 34(1): 55–82. DOI: 10.1111/dpr.12147



Recent talks and Conference presentations

  • Translocal Belongings: the role of faith and religion negotiating refugee integration in Latin America. Workshop Transnational Lives: Economies, Bureaucracies, and Desires. 11-12 January 2018. PRIO, Oslo. Norway.​
  • ​Debating ‘Refugee Integration’: Emerging Perspectives from Latin America. 2nd Annual Conference Refugee Law Initiative Conference, Mass Influx? Law, Policy and large-Scale Movements of Refugees and Migrants. 5-7 June 2017. School of Advance Study, University of London.
  • Making sense of changes on migration in Mexico: governance in North America. MIGPROSP Conference ‘The Dynamics of Regional Migration Governance’, 25-26 May 2017. European University Institute, Florence, Italy.
  • Understanding resettlement through refugee integration: paradoxes between the politics of humanitarianism and the politics of belonging. Panel Organiser: Contemporary Debates on Refugee Resettlement. RSC Conference 2017. Beyond Crisis: Rethinking Refugee Studies, University of Oxford. 16-17.03.2017
  • ‘The limits and opportunities of regional solidarity: Exploring refugee resettlement in South America’. Expert Panel 3: The Role of Regional and Inter-State Cooperation in Providing Protection and Securing Political Stability in Transit and Host States. Global Governance Initiative, The Hague Institute. The Netherlands. 07-09.12.2016
  • Researching refugees' experiences of unsettled citizenship in Latin America: A multi-sited mixed-method approach. RGS-IBG Annual International Conference 2016, RGS-IBG London, 02.09.2016
  • Politics of resettlement: Expectations and unfulfilled promises in refugee resettlement in Chile and Brazil. XVI IASFM Conference – Rethinking Forced Migration and Displacement: Theory, Policy, and Praxis. Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań. 12–15.07.2016
Professional Service
  • Dr Vera Espinoza has reviewed papers for Review of International Studies; Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies; Social Inclusion; Forced Migration Review; Cogent Social Sciences; Revista Migraciones and Antípoda. She also has been grant reviewer of The International Post-Doc Initiative (IPODI) Technische Universität Berlin.
  • Marcia is Steering Committee Member Migration Research group at Sheffield (Sheffield MRG). She is also a Research Fellow at the Sheffield Institute of International Development (SIID); member of the International Association for the Study of Forced Migration (IAFSM) and Society for Latin American Studies (SLAS).
  • 2017 Participated as Chile country expert for the Migration and the Law Project, World Bank Group.
  • 2017 Member Scientific Committee VII Seminário Nacional and II Conferência Latino-Americana da Cátedra Sérgio Vieira de Mello, Universidade Católica de Santos Brazil and UNHCR Brazil.
  • 2013-2014 Student Representative of the Developing Areas Research Group (DARG) - Research/study groups in the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG).
  • 2013-2014 Committee member Postgraduate in Latin American Studies (PILAS)

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