Cristina Sala Valdes



Personal profile

Academic Background

I am Senior Research Associate at the University of East Anglia (England). Nowadays, I work in the project "Ixchel", a project that aims at reducing disaster risk in Guatemala. Our work package uses arts based methods to engage with people and invite them to discuss issues around disaster risk, to share their stories and to learn from them and others in the process. I use a conflict transformation approach and a decolonial/local turn at two levels: 1) generating new frameworks and concepts that help defining roles for communication in conflict scenarios and 2) doing practice-based research.
As Professor, I am counsellor and tutor of MA subjects and thesis within the Campus for Peace (Open University of Catalonia) and the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR).
I am specialised in transdisciplinary research. I have obtained my PHD with a dissertation dedicated to “Pathways of Communications for Peace. Conceptualization, Critic Review and Proposals from the lenses of Communication towards Social Change and Conflict Transformation Theory” (University of Deusto). I hold a MA in Evaluation of Public Policies and Programs (Complutense University). As junior researcher in 2007-2008 and 2010-2011, I have completed two research periods (Marie Curie Research Grant) within the Department of Peace and Conflict Studies, Uppsala University; and the Centre for Social Studies, University of Coimbra. I am author of several articles, chapters in books and study materials that explore the intersections between communication, peace and development. My current research interests include: communication towards conflict transformation, decolonization of peace, restorative memory, pluriverse, evaluation of communication for social change and peace.
Besides my academic appointments, I have worked as consultant for the Basque Office of UNHCR and the Spanish Association of Evaluation (APROEVAL). As a member of the European Union Latin America Relations Observatory (OBREAL) I am committed to develop participatory processes that help building sustainable peace in Colombia.