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Observatory of Social Conflict

About Us

The ICCS Research Group

The Observatory of Social Conflict is part of the ICCS research group at the University of Barcelona (its acronym meaning, in Catalan, Research on Social Conflict and Change). Its basic goal is to promote scientifically-based new knowledge about the logics of social conflict and change, so that both the information gathered and the findings can be spread throughout society and, thereby, contribute to building more just and egalitarian societies which are able to rationally manage emerging conflicts. The dominant analytical approach is relational: relationships between individuals are the basic social units of social inquiry, and it relies as well on a critically oriented positive sociology.


Stable Team (2020-21)

UB coordinator: María T. Bretones (Professor of Social Structure)


Team members: Jordi Bonet Martí (University of Barcelona), Clara Camps Clavet (University of Barcelona), Carlos A. Charry (Sociology PhD [UB], professor at the University of Antioquia), Ximena Cuadra Montoya (Master in Sociological Research [UB]), Albert Ferrer (PhD student in Political Science [UB]), Pilar Goñalons (Sociologist [UB], lecturer at the University of Wisconsin-Madison), Joan Linio (Sociologist, UB), Guadalupe Lucas (Sociology Graduate [UB]), Jaime Pastor (professor of Political Science, UNED, Madrid), Joan Quesada (associate professor of Sociology at the University of Barcelona), Nicolás Rojas Pedemonte (Sociology PhD [UB], professor at the Alberto Hurtado University, Chile), Sandra Vera (University of Chile, PhD in Sociology, UB) and Carlos Zeller (journalist and sociologist).



Video Production: Jordi Roig & Clara Barrio,


Scientific & Advisory Board

January 2021


  • Manuel Castells - Professor of Sociology, Universitat Oberta de Catalunya and University of California, Los Angeles. Author of the trilogy The Information Age. Economy, Society and Culture, 1996-98.

  • María Jesús Funes - Professor of Political Science, UNED, Madrid. Author of La salida del silencio: movilizaciones por la paz en Euskadi 1986-1998 and editor of A propósito de Tilly: conflicto, poder y acción colectiva, 2011.

  • Manuel Antonio Garretón - Dept. of Sociology, University of Chile. Premio Nacional de Humanidades y Ciencias Sociales (Chile, 2007). Author of The incomplete democracy. Studies on politics and society in Latin America and Chile, 2003.

  • Pedro Ibarra - Professor of Political Science, Universidad del País Vasco. Author of Democracia relacional, 2011.

  • Sami Naïr - Professor of Political Science, director of Centro Mediterraneo Andalusí (CMA), Universidad Pablo de Olavide. Author of ¿Por qué se rebelan? revoluciones y contrarevoluciones en el mundo árabe, Clave Intelectual, 2013

  • Rodolfo Stavenhagen - Emeritus professor, El Colegio de México, Centro de Estudios Sociológicos. Author of Las clases sociales en las sociedades agrarias, 1969.

  • Joan Subirats - Professor of Political Science, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB), director of the Catalan Institute of Government and Public Policies (IGOP).

  • Joan Tugores - Professor of Economic Theory, Universitat de Barcelona (UB), former president of the UB (2001-2005). Author of El lado oscuro de la economía, 2009.

  • Esther Vivas - Member of the Centre d'Estudis sobre Moviments Socials de la UPF (Barcelona). Coauthor of Resistencias globales. De Seattle a la crisis de Wall Street, 2009, and Del campo al plato. Los circuitos de producción y distribución de alimentos, 2009. Social activist.

* Arcadi Oliveres (1945-2021) - Professor of Applied Economics, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB), president of Justícia i Pau, human rights activist. We deeply regret his loss after being inspired by him for so long.

* Salvador Aguilar (1943-2020) - Professor of Social Structure and Change, University of Barcelona (UB),and co-founder of this Observatory. Author of Ordre i desordre, 2001. Winner of the Daniel Singer Prize 2009 with his work "Socialism in the 21st Century World" (at We are thankful for having had the chance to collaborate with him lenthily and closely, and we keep him in our memory.

* Salvador Giner (1934-2019) - Professor of Sociology, Universitat de Barcelona (UB), president of the Institut d'Estudis Catalans. Author of Sociology, 2010, and Historia del pensamiento social, 1982. We enjoyed his support and we grew intellectually in the shade of his erudition. We do not forget him.

* Miquel Caminal i Badia (1952-2014) - Professor of Political Science (UB) and Director of Catalonia's Democratic Memorial. He was member of this Scientific and Advisory Board since the beginning of our project. He will always remain in our memories, with gratitude for his friendship and support.

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