Structural violence and inequality

Criminal violence and urban insecurity

Political, ethnic violence and radicalization

Document, analyze and theorize practices of criminal violence and experiences of insecurity.

Associate Researchers

Juan Pablo Luna

Juan Pablo Luna has a PhD in Political Science from the University of North Caroina at Chapel Hill and is a full professor at the School of Government and Political Science Institute of the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile. He is a part of the Millenium Institute Foundation of Data (IMFD) -where he is currenty developing a project of “thick data” for the chilean constitutional process- and of the Center of Applied Ecology and Sustainability (CAPES). He is also the leading researcher of the FONDECYT project “Crimen organizado en el Cono Sur”.

His main research interests are organized crime, political representation, State capabilities and thick data. His main publications are the book En vez del optimismo, Crisis de Representación en el Chile Actual (2017)” and the article Segmented Representation, Political Representation in Unequal Democracies (2014).

Alejandra Luneke

Alejandra Luneke is an academic at the Sociology Department of Universidad Alberto Hurtado and a sociology PhD from the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile. She currently collaborates with the Centre for Sustainable Human Development (CEDEUS) and the Center for Studies on Conflict and Social Cohesion (COES).

Her research has revolved around securitization politics and state control of urban territories, processes of socioespacial transformation and territorial inequality as well as violence and fear in urban neighbourhoods. This research has reflected in articles such as  An alternative path for democratic security.” (2021),  “Violencia y Seguridad en los márgenes urbanos: la respuesta chilena en los vecindarios” (2020) y  “Transformaciones urbanas, Temor y Empeligrosamiento social en vecindarios El caso de Maipú”, among others. 

Hugo Rojas

Hugo Rojas has a PhD in Sociology from the Oxford University. He is Director at the Department of Law Sciences within the Law Faculty of the Alberto Hurtado University as well as adjunct professor of the Political Science Institute of the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile. He is also a researcher for the Interdisciplinary Program  on Memory and Human Rights Research at the Alberto University.

His research focuses on humans rights, transitional justice and the modernization of justice. Hugo is author of “El Principio de la Multiculturalidad” (2002), co author of “Litigación Oral en el Nuevo Proceso Penal “(2005) and “Derechos Humanos y Libertad Sindical” (2009). He is also co-author of two other in press books:  Litigación Penal Estratégica en Juicios Orales (2021) y Human Rights and Transitional Justice in Chile (2021) .

Oriana Bernasconi

Oriana Bernasconi has a PhD in sociology from the London School of Economics and Political Sciences and is currently an associate professor at the Department of Sociology of the Alberto Hurtado University. She co-directs the Interdisciplinary Program of Memory and Human Rights Research at Alberto Hurtado University, is the main researcher of the FONDECYT “Más allá del paradigma de la víctima: genealogías de dispositivos de performación de sujetos de la violencia política. Chile, 1973-2018” and director of the project Anillos-PIA-ANID “Political Technologies of Memory: Contemporary uses and appropriation of past human rights violations registry devices in Chile”.

Her main research interests are political violence and documentality, sociology of the subject, sociology of morality and post-structural social theory.  Her latest book are Resistance to Political Violence in Latin America: Documenting Atrocity” (2019) – “Documentar la atrocidad. Resistir el Terrorismo de Estado” (2020) and her latest report for the general public is “Archives of Violence: Case Studies from South America” in collaboration with Goldsmiths College. 

Ángel Aedo

Angel Aedo has a PhD in Social Anthropology and Ethnology from the Paris’ École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales. He is an associate professor at the School of Anthropology of the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile and alternate director of the Interdisciplinary Team ANID/COVID at the Center of Justice and Society. He is the main researcher of the projects Fondecyt Regular 1212047 ‘Goberning Through Affect’ as well as  ECOS/ANID 180012 ‘Normative Encounters in Carceral Society’ con la École Normale Supérieure de Lyon-. He has also been a member of the Center of Intercultural and Indigenous Research (CIIR) since its foundation.

His current research encompasses dynamics of structural and state violence amongst social groups considered to have a tendency towards illicit activities by the State and their inter relations with social development and security institutions.

Simultaneously, his work has special attention for “bottom-up” forms of citizenship, democratic co habitance and urban practices of commoning.

Amongst his recent publications there are ‘The task of the museum in shaping the aesthetic-political field of memory in post-Pinochet Chile’ (2021);  ‘Conflicting Visibilities: Police and Politics among Border Migrants in Chile.’ (2020) y ‘Una seguridad (muy) interior del Estado. El trabajo de la prevención en familias de reclusos’ (2020). Expertise and technologies of government: The emergence of think tanks in Chile” (2017).

Helene Risor

Helene Risør has a PhD in Anthropology from Copenhagen University. She is associate professor at the Shchool of Anthropology of the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile and main researcher at the Center for Indigenous and Intercultural Research (CIIR). She is also associate adjunct professor at Copenhagen University.  

Dr.Risor research focuses on the relations between subjectivation, politics and violence. She has carried extensive field work in andean Bolivia and Chile about experiences of insecurity, crime and self-served justice, formal and informal expressions of citizenship and relations between citizens and the State, including studies about law enforcement. 

She is currently carrying out research about the social life of reparatory politics in the context of demoratic state formation in Chile. The results of her research are available in various publications. Amongst the more recent there are “Civil victimhood: Citizenship, human rights and securitization in post-dictatorship Chile” (2018);  ‘Interculturalism as treason’: policing, securitization, and neoliberal state formation in Southern Chile” (2018)  “Overflow: The experience of an escalating chi’xi revolution in Bolivia” (2020)

Salvador Millaleo

Salvador Millaleo has a PhD in sociology from Bielefeld University in Germany. He is an assistant professor at the Law Faculty of the University of Chile and is a researcher for both the Center of Human Rights and the Institute of Ecology and Biodiversity. 

His research interests are human rights, enviromental rights and indigineous people rights, as well as the relation between law and technology, critical law theory and juridical sociology. 

His current research focuses on plurinationality and the political rights of indigenous people, it also focuses on nature as a subject of rights as a resolution for environmental conflicts. 

Amongst his most relevant research products there are the book chapters “Los derechos de los Pueblos Indígenas como derecho a pertenecer a la naturaleza y el reconocimiento constitucional en Chile” from the book Una perspectiva constitucional del medio ambiente (2019) and  “Digital Activism and the Mapuche Nation” from the book Digital Activism in Chile, as well as the article Guarda de la Naturaleza: Conocimientos Ecológicos Tradicionales de los Pueblos Indígenas y Estrategias de Protección” (2020)

José Manuel Fernandez

José Manuel Fernandez has a PhD in Law from the University of Glasgow and is an associate professor at the Alberto Hurtado University. His research interests are theory and philosophy of criminal law, intimate violence and multiculturalism. He is currently the main researcher of a FONDECYT project about domestic violence.


Adjunct Researchers

Catalina Droppelmann

Catalina Droppelmann has a PhD in Criminology from Cambridge University. She is Executive and Research Director of the UC Center of Justice and Society and Adjunct Professor at the Sociology Institute of the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile. 

Her research interests are criminal justice, social reinsertion, prison and punishment and youth crime. She is currently a part of three active research projects related to this topics Transitions out of crime: New approaches on desistance in late adolescence “; “La reacción carcelaria en contextos impredecibles: ¿Cómo se articularon los diversos actores vinculados al mundo penitenciario ante la amenaza del COVID?”; “Reinserción, Desistimiento y Reincidencia en Mujeres Privadas de Libertad en Chile” y “La justicia penitenciaria de la población adulta en Chile: propuestas para su reforma”.

Amongst her most recent publications there are the book “Transitions out of crime: intentions, changes and obstacles on the road towards desistance” (2021) and the collaborative articles Responding to the coronavirus crisis in Chile” (2021) y “Crime and inequalities in Latin America” (2020).

María Paz Trebilcock

Maria Paz Trebilcock. has a PhD in Sociology from the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile. She is also director at the Department of Sociology of Alberto Hurtado University and researcher for the Interdisciplinary Center of Public Policy (CIIP).

She is currently developing research about structural violence, territorial inequalities and unequal access to public services. Said research has lead to the publications of the collaborative articles “Transformaciones urbanas, temor y empeligrosamiento social en vecindarios. El caso de Maipú” (2020);  “Crime Prevention and The Coproduction of Security: outcomes of citizen participation at the neighborhood level in Neoliberal Chile” (2019) y “Segregaciones: habitar la periferia popular en Santiago, Concepción y Talca” (2020).

Young Researchers

Fernando Pairican

Fernando Pairicán has a PhD in History from the University of Santiago of Chile.  He is an academic at the University of Santiago de Chile, Diego Portales University and Alberto Hurtado University he also holds a post doc position at the Center for Intercultural and Ingenous Research of the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile.

His main research interests are XIX century mapuche history, the autonomist mapuche movement and the current chilean constitutional prcess. His postdoctoral project is focused upon liberal governements’ indigenous policies and mapuche resistance. It also focuses in the dynamics of the mapuche movement and its relation with the Estado. His most importante publications are the books “lToqui: Guerra y Tradición en el siglo XIX” (2020); “Wallmapu: Plurinacionalidad y Nueva Constitución” (2019); “La Biografía de Matías Catrileo” (2018) y “Malon. La rebelión del movimiento mapuche” (2014). He is a columnist for CIPER Académico, Le Monde Diplomatique Chile and The Clinic as a part of his outreach activities and as a critical intelectual.

Pilar Larroulet

Pilar Larroulet has PhD in Criminology and Criminal Justice from the Maryland College Park, receveing the Feminist Criminology Scholarship for its execution. She is an assistant professor at the Sociology Institute of the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile.

Her research interests are sociology of crime, trajectories of involvement in crime, crime and gender, penitentiary system and social integration. She’s particularly interested in understanding the factors that incide in criminal involvement and its continuity within and through generations, as well as analyzing the consequences of contact with the justice system.

She is currently working on two collaborative research projects “Reinserción, desistimiento y reincidencia en mujeres privadas de libertad en Chile”  which analyses the process of post carcelary  reinsertion of women in Santiago, Chile; and a study estimating the effects of lockdowns on domestic violence. 

Her most recent collaborative publications are  “Who is Transitioning out of Prison? Characterizing Female Offenders and Their Needs in Chile” (2020) and “Machine learning for policing: a case study on arrests in Chile” (2020).

Carla Alberti

Carla Alberti has a PhD in Political Science from Brown University. She is an assistant professor at the Political Science Institute of the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile.

Her main research interests are indigenous politics, parties-movements and illegal economies and violence. She is currently a part of two Fondecyt projects: her own Fondecyt called “Party- movements in Comparative Perspective: Social Organizations and Indigenous Parties in Latin America” and is a co-researcher for Juan Pablo Luna’s Fondecyt “Corruption, violence, or both? The political economy of organized crime in “low- violence” settings”.

Her most recent publications are the articles endered Bureaucracies: Women Mayors and the Size and Composition of Local Governments” (2021); Populist Multiculturalism in the Andes: Balancing Political Control and Societal Autonomy” (2019) y “Getting Prepared to be Prepared: How Interpersonal Skills aid Fieldwork in Challenging Contexts” (with Nicole Jenne) (2019).