Rodrigo Mena (Ph.D) is a researcher and consultant working on disasters, conflict, humanitarian aid, and applied fieldwork research. Currently, he is involved in the project “When disasters meet conflict” at the International Institute of Social Studies (ISS) of Erasmus University Rotterdam, working with Prof. Dr. Thea Hilhorst. His primary focus is on disaster governance and humanitarian aid in high-intensity conflict-affected scenarios.
For more than a decade he has worked in academia, public and private sector, government, local and international NGOs, and the United Nations. Next to doing fieldwork in hostile, complex and remote areas in Latin America, Europe, Oceania and Asia (e.g. including South Sudan, Chile, Jordan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan), he has also led humanitarian aid groups and conducted research after the occurrence of several disasters, including earthquakes, tsunamis, landslides, floods, and droughts.
Rod is also Board Member of the International Humanitarian Studies Association (IHSA), convener of the Peace and Ecology in the Anthropocene (PEA) commission at the International Peace Research Association (IPRA), and Board Member of the ISS Blog on Global Development and Social Justice (BLISS). At the academic level, he has taught at universities and is the author of articles and book chapters. Previous research also focused on climate change, peak oil and transition strategies; urban agriculture and food security; and applied fieldwork research.
He holds degrees in Sociology (Magna Cum Laude), Political and Social Science (Cum Laude), a Master of Environments from the University of Melbourne (H1, Magna Cum Laude) and diplomas in methodology and socio-environmental topics, including Quantitative Multivariable Analysis, Environmental Impact Assessment, Public Policy, and Sustainable Development. Regarding applied research, Rod has experience and training in the development of fieldwork in hostile, complex and remote areas, being certified by United Nations, Red Cross, Centre for Safety and Development, GCORE, and RedR Emergency Response.
Areas of study:
- Socio-environmental disasters and conflicts
- Humanitarian Aid
- Environmental Sociology
- Resilience and social vulnerability
- Urban agriculture and food security
- Climate change, peak oil, transition strategies, environmental education and limits to growth
- Methodology of transdisciplinary research, and
- Research and fieldwork in hostile, complex and remote areas
- Board Member, International Humanitarian Studies Association (IHSA)
- Convener and Managing Coordinator of the Ecology, Conflict Risks, Forced Migration & Peace (ECR-FMP) commission, International Peace Research Association (IPRA)
- Member, International Studies Association (ISA)
- Editorial Board Member, ISS Blog on Global Development and Social Justice (BLISS)