I am a doctor of sociology and migration/diversity scholar at GRITIM-UPF, currently as Marie Curie Research Fellow. My profile is international and interdisciplinary, integrating political theory and sociological approaches within the overall theoretical framework of citizenship and inclusion and the mechanisms that shape them. The interrelation between the theoretical and the empirical dimension of research is essential in my scholarship: I largely conduct qualitative field studies, often applying ethnographic methods to collect extensive first hand data, and aim at contributing to theory development by integrating political and social dynamics within this field into theorizing and generation of academic knowledge. My main research areas involve inclusion and exclusion, precarity, intersectionality, and agency of immigrants and racialized groups in European societies, with a particular focus on discrimination. I often apply a structure-agency approach, by examining the interplay between the institutional context and different groups of actors or stakeholders, who may uphold, negotiate or challenge institutional practices. Moreover, I am interested in the intersections between gender and diversity, and have conducted research on female migrant domestic workers, and also on value conflicts around gender roles between ethnic majority and minority groups.

At present, my research project REPCAT (The Role of the Ethnic Majority in Integration Processes: Attitudes and Practices towards Immigrants in Catalan Institutions) examines diversity management in Catalan public institutions, suggesting that an increased representation of immigrants and members of ethnic minority groups is necessary in order to fulfil intercultural policy aims, and, at a broader level, that the representation of ethnic diversity in public institutions is a democratic necessity in the superdiverse European societies of today. This project was selected by the Catalan Association of Public Universities (ACUP) as an example of research that supports a sustainable development by promoting the equality of opportunities (click here for more information).

I currently teach the course “Diversity, Discrimination and Citizenship” at the Master in Migration Studies programme (UPF), and the undergraduate course “Immigració i mercat de treball” at the Department of Law (UPF). I am also a thesis supervisor at the PhD and Master programmes of the Department of Political and Social Sciences (UPF). I generally apply an intersectional approach, and the gender perspective is mainstreamed and integrated in my teaching.


Zenia Hellgren

GRITIM-UPF (Interdisciplinary Research Group on Immigration)

Edifici Mercè Rodoreda (campus de la Ciutadella)
Ramon Trias Fargas, 25-27
08005 Barcelona

 +34 93 542 2701

[email protected]

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