Photgraph of Marcia Vera.

Dr Marcia A. Vera Espinoza

Postdoctoral Research Associate, MIGPROSP Project

Contact Details
Telephone: +44 (0) 114 222 1652
Room: Elmfield Lodge
Feedback and Consultation Hours:
Wednesday 12:00-13:00
Thursday 14:00-15:00


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 has degrees in Human Geography, International Studies, Social Communication and Journalism. She recently finished her PhD research in the Geography Department at the University of Sheffield. The research 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. The research engaged with literature about refugee integration and uncertainty in order to develop the notion of ‘unsettlement’, understood as the condition by which refugees’ feelings of uncertainty and instability extend and normalise, from displacement and transit, into the resettlement experience. Unsettlement is further explored in relation to scales of citizenship, translocal belongings and the politics of refugee resettlement.

Marcia’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/EU, North America/NAFTA, South America/MERCOSUR and Asia-Pacific/APEC) and explores implications for institutional change.

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.

Marcia is also co-administrator of the Migration Research Network at Sheffield.

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.


MA Level
POL6003: The Politics of Global Migration (Module Leader)

Level 3 – Undergraduate
POL3147: The Politics of Asylum

I also have lecturing and teaching experience 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)

Professional Affiliations

Marcia is member of the International Association for the Study of Forced Migration (IAFSM), the Society for Latin American Studies (SLAS) and Postgraduate Fellow Royal Geographical Society (with IBG).

Publications and Papers


Examples of Recent Papers and Talks

  • Researching refugees' experiences of unsettled citizenship in Latin America: A multi-sited mixed-method approach. Panel Researching Citizenship through actor-centered approaches RGS-IBG Annual International Conference 2016, London. 30 August to Friday 2 September 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, Poznań, Poland.
  • A Migrant Researching Refugee Experiences: Power, Privilege and Identities in a Study of Resettlement in Latin America. 2nd Postgraduate Conference on Migration “Looking Beyond the Refugee Crisis” Migration Research at the University of Sheffield. 09.06.2016, Sheffield, UK.
  • Forced Migration in Latin America: methodological and ethical challenges researching refugees in urban areas’. Migrants in the City Interdisciplinary Conference, The University of Sheffield, 13.10.2015, UK.
  • ‘Unsettled’ citizens: Experiences of Colombian and Palestinians Resettled Refugees in Chile and Brazil’. Panel Scales of Citizenship. RGS-IBG Annual International Conference 2015, University of Exeter, 2-4.09.2015, UK.
  • ‘Resettlement in South America: Experiences in Chile and Brazil’. XV IASFM Conference - Forced Migration and Peace. Universidad Javariana. 15–18.07.2014, Bogotá, Colombia.
  • ‘Mapping refugee resettlement in Latin America: actors, processes and expectations in Chile and Brazil’. SLAS 2014: 50th Anniversary Conference, Birkbeck, University of London. 1-2.04.2014. UK

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