Back Benach De Rovira, Joan


Political and Social Sciences Department


Short Biosketch

Director of the Health Inequalities Research Group / Employment Conditions Network (GREDS-EMCONET, UPF), Co-Director of the JHU-UPF Public Policy Center, and Senior Researcher and Full Professor at the Department of Political and Social Sciences at the Pompeu Fabra University (UPF) in Barcelona (Catalonia, Spain). My academic background includes an MD, an MPH, a degree in Preventive Medicine & Public Health, a PhD in Public Health (Johns Hopkins University) and a wide-ranging background in the social sciences (e.g., History, and Methodology of Social Sciences).

My main scientific contributions include a large number of papers and publications with original analyses on the Social Determinants of Health Inequalities, including employment conditions and precarious employment, the study of health intersections between social class, geography, migration, and gender, and the development of health policy analyses and methods. I have shown my leadership in many research projects in Spain, Europe, Latin America and elsewhere (e.g., Global Projects such as the WHO Commission on Social Determinants of Health, or the European Project SOPHIE), giving numerous presentations, conferences, and workshops on the aforementioned subjects. In 2022, he was designated coordinator of the Commission of experts on the impact of job insecurity on mental health, presented by Vice President Yolanda Diaz. 

My research has been supported by a wide variety of government and private grants from both competitive and non-competitive sources. I have taught numerous national and international courses and seminars that have sought to challenge students and researchers to think critically when addressing emerging research topics, embracing new ideas and methods in their search for innovative public health solutions. Moreover, I have extensively developed substantial Knowledge Transfer activities that include frequent collaborations with civil society groups and institutions, including the publication of books, reports, and leaflets for general audiences, as well as numerous appearances in the media and social networks.


Research Interests

Public Health, Social Determinants, Health Inequalities, Employment Conditions, Social and Geographical Inequalities in Health, Complexity


Appointments and Visiting Positions

  • Associate researcher. Interface Demography Research Group,Vrije Universiteit Brussel (Belgium).
  • Associate researcher.Karolinska Institutet (Sweden).
  • Associate researcher. University of Toronto (Canada).
  • Associate researcher. Johns Hopkins University (Baltimore, US).
  • Visiting Professor. University of Antioquia, Medellín (Colombia).
  • Assistant and Associate Professor. Department of Experimental and Health Sciences. UPF.
  • Associate Researcher. National School of Health (Madrid, Spain).
  • Researcher. Centre for AIDS Prevention (Barcelona, Spain).


Selected Publications

  •  Benach, J., Padilla-Pozo, Á., Martínez-Herrera, E., Molina-Betancur, J. C., Gutiérrez, M., Pericàs, J. M., Gutiérrez-Zamora Navarro, M., & Zografos, C. (2022). What do we know about the impact of economic recessions on mortality inequalities? A critical review. Social Science & Medicine, 296(114733), 1–10.
  • Méndez FM, Padrosa E, Utzet M, Benach J, Julià M. Precarious employment, psychosocial risk factors and mental health: A cross-sectional mediation analysis. Safety Science 2021 2021;143 105439)
  • Llop-Gironés A, Vračar A, Llop-Gironés G, Benach J, Angeli-Silva L, Jaimez L, Thapa P, Bhatta R, Mahindrakar S, Bontempo Scavo S, Nar Devi S, Barria S, Marcos Alonso S. Julià M, Employment and working conditions of nurses: Where and how health inequalities have increased during the COVID-19 pandemic? Hum Resour Health 19, 112 (2021). 
  • Llop-Gironés A, Santillan-Garcia A, Cash-Gibson L, Benach J, Zabalegui A. COVID-19 and the Global need for Knowledge on Nurses’ Health. Int Nursing Review. 2021 Oct 6. doi: 10.1111/inr.12722.
  • Talens M, Tumas N, Lazarus JV, Benach J, Pericàs JM. What do we know about inequalities in NAFLD distribution and outcomes? A scoping review. Journal of Clinical Medicine (Clin. Med. 2021, 10, 5019.
  • Julià M, Belvis F, Vives A, Tarafa G, Benach J. Informal employees in the European Union. Working conditions, employment precariousness, and health. Journal of Public Health. 2019. 41(2):e141-e151.
  • Llop-Gironés A, Cash-Gibson L, Chicumbe S, Alvarez F, Zahinos I, Mazive E, Benach J. Health equity monitoring is essential in public health: lessons from Mozambique. Globalization Health. 2019 Dec 18;15(1):67. doi: 10.1186/s12992-019-0508-4. 
  • Jonsson J, Vives A, Benach J, Kjellberg K, Selander J, Johansson G, Bodin T. Measuring precarious employment in Sweden: translation, adaptation and psychometric properties of the Employment Precariousness Scale (EPRES). BMJ Open. 2019 Sep 24;9(9):e029577. doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2019-029577
  • Delgado I, Cabieses B, Apablaza M, Castillo C, Aguilera X, Matute I, Najera M, Pericàs JM, Benach J. Evaluation of the effectiveness and equity of the maternity protection reform in Chile from 2000 to 2015. PLoS One. 2019 Sep 11;14(9):e0221150. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0221150. eCollection 2019.

  • Peralta A, Benach J, Borrell C, Espinel-Flores V, Cash-Gibson L, Queiroz B, Marí-Dell'Olmo M. Evaluation of the mortality registry in Ecuador (2001-2013) - social and geographical inequalities in completeness and quality. Popul Health Metr. 2019 Mar 28;17(1):3. doi: 10.1186/s12963-019-0183-y

  • Fondevila-McDonald Y, Molinero-Ruiz E, Vergara-Duarte M, Guillén M, Ollé-Espluga L, Menéndez M, Benach J. Is there an estimation bias in occupational health and safety surveys? The mode of administration and informants as a source of error. Sociological Methods and Research. 2019 Feb; 48(1): 185-201. DOI: 10.1177/0049124116672681.