The LDA Faculty is composed of leading researchers from different institutions around the world in ICLD’s academic Advisory Group. They join the Local Democracy Academy as session conveners and advisors. That said, the conference is highly structured around the peer exchange and active participation of all participants.

Amalinda Savirani

Professor of Political Science at Gadjah Mada University, Indonesia

Amalinda is a Professor of Political Science and Head of Department Politics and Government at Gadjah Mada University, Indonesia. Her PhD research focused on the political behaviour of business actors responding to political shifts and neoliberalism in Pekalongan, Central Java, in Sociology and Anthropology. Her research interests include studies of social movements in the urban sector and labour with political economy.

Anders Lidström

Professor, Department of Political Science, Umeå University

His research focuses on local politics and government, comparative politics and education policy. This includes studies of local democracy and self-government, and political participation in city-regions, both within Sweden and in a comparative perspective. He has also carried out research on education policy, with a particular focus on how this is shaped at the local level.

Tomila Lankina

Professor of International Relations, at London School of Economics, UK

Tomila’s research focuses on comparative democracy and authoritarianism, mass protests and historical patterns of human capital and democratic reproduction in Russia and other states. She is currently working on a book on the long-term patterns of reproduction of social structures in Russia and why this matter for democracy, development, and social inequalities.

Valeria Guarneros-Meza

Reader in Public Policy and Politics | Deputy Director, Centre for Urban Research on Austerity Department of Politics, People and Place De Montfort University, Leicester, UK

Valeria has a PhD in Public Policy (De Montfort University, UK). Currently, she is a visiting scholar at the Department of Urban Studies and Planning, University of Sheffield. Between 2014-2022 she was Reader in Public Policy and Politics, De Montfort University. Her research focus has been on local governance, citizen participation, collaboration, partnership working. She has been able to study these topics within the English and Welsh contexts and in Mexico and Latin America. She has done studies on the impact that structural economic changes and institutional socio-political reforms have on local governance. Also, democratic principles such as inclusion and accountability have been also an area of interest, particularly how these concepts and meanings affect the organisational structures of local government as well as the practices and behaviour of local government bureaucrats.

Jesse C. Ribot

Professor, School of International Service at American University, Washington, DC, USA

Before starting at AU August 2018, Jesse spent a decade as a professor of Geography, Anthropology and Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences and Director of the Social Dimensions of Environmental Policy Initiative at the University of Illinois. He has also worked for numerous development agencies, such as World Bank and United Nations. His research focuses on decentralization and democratic local government, natural resource tenure and access, distribution along natural resource commodity chains and household vulnerability in the face of climate and environmental change. Read more at www.jesseribot.com.
See also the short video “Climate Refugees?” on ICLD’s Youtube channel and Jesse’s publications in the ICLD Knowledge Bank.

Ana Maria Vargas

Director of Studies, Department of Sociology of Law, Lund University

Ana Maria is a scholar in the field of international development, passionate about social justice and understanding social change. With a PhD in sociology of law from Lund University and the University of Milan, her thesis was awarded the prize for Best dissertation in Sweden in the field of working environment by FALF -Forum for Working Life Research in 2016. She has published research on inclusive urbanization and local democracy, the everyday life of street vendors and rickshaw drivers, the local politics of air pollution, and everyday forms of resistance to urban politics, recently with a focus on climate change adaptation. Ana Maria believes that research must strive to make an impact in the world, and she currently leads the Knowledge Centre at ICLD, where she strives to connect research with local practitioners and politicians that want to make a better world. Originally from Colombia, Ana Maria is currently living in the city of Malmö, Sweden.

Sten Hagberg

Professor of Cultural Anthropology and director of the Forum for African Studies at Uppsala University, Sweden

Sten is a Professor of Cultural Anthropology and director of the Forum for African Studies at Uppsala University, Sweden. His PhD research focused on dispute settlement between farmers and herders in Burkina. He has conducted anthropological research in Burkina Faso since 1988 and in Mali since 2008 covering themes including dispute settlement, local politics, environment, development, democracy and social movements. His research nowadays focuses on political culture, municipal democracy, local development, the mass media, security and popular struggle.

Quinton Mayne

Director of Research, Bloomberg Harvard City Leadership Initiative, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, USA.

Quinton’s research interests include comparative political behavior, democratic representation, subnational and urban politics, and social policy. He earned his Ph.D. in politics from Princeton University.

Winnie V. Mitullah

Director and Associate Research Professor of Development Studies at the Institute for Development Studies (IDS), and the Director of Gender Affairs, University of Nairobi

Winnie is the current Director and Associate Research Professor of Development Studies at the Institute for Development Studies (IDS), and the Director of Gender Affairs, University of Nairobi, with which ICLD has an MoU. She holds a PhD in Political Science and Public Administration from the University of York, UK. Her PhD thesis was on Urban Housing, with a major focus on policies relating to low-income housing.

Winnie is also a well-cited scholar with a long list of relevant publications related to local governance, democracy and urban marginalised groups. She is also the chair of the University of Nairobi UNESCO Chairs and UNITWIN Networks.

ICLD Staff

Robin Alnäs

Research Officer

Clara Orstadius

Research Officer

Emma Herlitz