Javiera Barandiarán

Associate Professor
Graduate Director
Graduate Diversity Officer

Office Location

SSMS 2129


Graduate student office hours Fall 2023: (drop in) Wednesdays 2-4pm in SSMS 2129


Javiera Barandiarán is Associate Professor in the Global Studies program at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Barandiarán received her Ph.D. in 2013 from the University of California, Berkeley in Environmental Science, Policy and Management. She holds a Masters in Public Policy also from Berkeley and received her B.A. in politics from the University of Edinburgh, Scotland. In 2022 she was awarded a Berlin Prize from the American Academy in Berlin for her research on lithium mining. Her research has been awarded support from the National Science Foundation, the Andrew Mellon Foundation, the Social Science Research Council, Chile's National Agency for Science (ANID) and others. Her work explores the intersection of science, environment, and development in Latin America.

Important information for prospective graduate students: our departmental website contains a lot of useful information about both our MA and PhD programs. Please read these pages carefully and study the areas of expertise and specialization of our faculty to ensure our department is the right one for you. Should you have any remaining questions about the department or programs, feel free to email me or Kaylia Grant, our Grad Program Advisor (who can best answer questions about requirements, the application process, etc.).


Director of the Center for Restorative Environmental Work (CREW), which examines emergent frameworks and strategies for rebuilding socioecological relations through active connections in California and Latin America to the broader Pacific Rim.

Co-PI on the project Irreversible returns. A study on glaciology and glacial geo-engineering in Chile in the context of the Anthropocene, with Cristián Simonetti and José Ragas of the Catholic University of Chile (Fondecyt project)

PI and co-PI on various projects related to lithium mining, including In the shadows of climate mitigation: The politics of mining for a just energy transition, with Craig Johnson, Teresa Kramarz, Don Kingsbury and Susan Park (Social Sicneces and Humanities Research Council of Canada project)


On lithium mining:

Blair, et al., 2022. Exhausted: How We Can Stop Lithium Mining from Depleting Water Resources, Draining Wetlands, and Harming Communities in South America

Barandiaran, 2019. “Lithium and Development Imaginaries in Chile, Argentina and Bolivia.” World Development. 113, pp. 381-391.

Barandiaran, 2021. “Democratizing Science for Post-Carbon Lithium Futures”. The Berlin Journal, no. 35. American Academy in Berlin.

On Rights of Nature:

Barandiaran, et al. 2022. Derechos de la Naturaleza en Chile: Argumentos para su desarrollo constitucional.

Podcast: “Rights of Nature: Global Experiences.” Hacia una Constitución Ecológica podcast, January 10.

On Chilean politics and constitutional reform:

Podcast: DECIDIMOS participar - Reflections on science, systems of knowledge and Chile's new draft constitution.

Barandiaran, 2021. Lo que el Estado neoliberal no sabe: Conflictos científicos y política ambiental en Chile.

Barandiaran, 2018. Science and Environment in Chile: The Politics of Expert Advice in a Neoliberal Democracy.

On Environmental and Energy Justice:

Ureta et al., 2023 Strenght out of Weakness: Rethinking scientific engagement with the ecological crisis as strategic action

Partridge et al., 2023 Decommissioning: another critical challenge for energy transitions

Barandiaran et al., 2022. Special stream issue of Media + Environment

For a full list of publications see my CV above.


Winter 2024: Global 224