Tanja Bastia

Tanja Bastia


Personal profile

Further information

Additional Information

Service and leadership

Director, Rory and Elizabeth Brooks Doctoral College (2021 - )

Co-convenor, Urban Justice, Gender and Social Difference theme, Manchester Urban Institute (2020 - )

Programme Director, MA MSc International Development, MA Development Studies, MA Poverty and Development (2014/15)

IDPM Exams Officer and Chair of the Exam Board (2013-2016)

University Research Ethics Committee member (2012-2015)

development@manchester seminar series convenor (2010-2015)

Member of the Editorial Board, Papeles, Centro de Investigacion para la Paz, CIP-FUHEM (Peace Research Centre), Madrid (2007-2020).

Membership of academic and professional bodies

Development Studies Association, co-founder and chair of the Migration, Development and Social Change Study Group (2009-)

Royal Geographical Society with the Institute of British Geographers, Developing Areas Research Group committee member (2010-2014)

Association of American Geographers, ordinary member

Society for Latin American Studies, ordinary member

Country experience

Bolivia, Peru, Argentina, UK, Italy, Spain

PhD Supervision

I am currently accepting PhD applicants and would be interested in supervising projects on migration and social inequalities, including gender relations, ethnicity and race, questions relating to care and project that broadly relate to informality in cities of the Global South. If you are interested in discussing an application, please contact me by email and send me a research proposal outlining your main questions, literature review, methodology and proposed study site.

Other research


2019-21       Ageing and migration: the challenges of transnational caring and social inequalities, Leverhulme Fellowship, £47,450, see project website https://ageingandmigration.wordpress.com/

2014        Ageing and migration in Bolivia, with Maria Esther Pozo, CESU - Universidad de San Simon, funded by British Academy and Leverhulme, £7,485

2013        Ageing and migration in Bolivia, with Maria Esther Pozo, CESU - Universidad de San Simon, funded by MICRA, Manchester Interdisciplinary Collaboration for Research on Ageing, £6,007

2013        Seeking justice: migration, informality and political participation in Buenos Aires, with Melanie Lombard and Diana Mitlin (GURC), and Jeronimo Montero Bressan, funded by cities@manchester, £5,955

2011        Migration status and space: implications for the migration-development nexus, with Uma Kothari (IDPM) and Nina Glick Schiller (RICC), SED research stimulation fund, £3,625.

2007-10 Emancipatory Migrations? Gender and Ethnicity in Transnational Migration for Work, British Academy Post-Doctoral Fellowship £194,278.

2007       School meals for social development: creating a virtuous cycle, with Kevin Morgan (Cardiff University) and Eleanor Fisher (Swansea), British Academy Small Grant, £7,500.

2007        School meals for development: creating a virtuous cycle, with Kevin Morgan (Cardiff University) commissioned by the World Food Programme/ Gates Foundation, £66,000. 


BA (Hons) (Liverpool), MA (IDS), PhD (Swansea).

I teach international development at the University of Manchester.  My research focuses on social inequalities, migration and space and I am currently developing two new areas of research: (i) migration and ageing, through a project funded by the British Academy and Leverhulme; and (ii) migration and cities in the Global South, through a project that has been looking at migrants in informal settlements in Buenos Aires, funded by cities@manchester.

Research interests

Ageing and migration. My research in this area builds on the work on global care chains to include a generational approach, particularly the role of grandmothers as primary care givers (Gender and Development, 2009), the role of migrant daughters as elderly carers in Spain (Geoforum, 2015). It also extends research on transnational care, to examine how transnational care practices differ in resource-poor countries and among different socio-economic groups, for example, by looking at the unequal consequences that migration has on the migrants' parents in Bolivia (Global Networks, 2020, with Calsina Valenzuela and Pozo).  I am currently finalising my research in this area through a Leverhulme Research Fellowship (2019-2021). 

Social relations, mobility and inequality. As part of this interest I have been analysing how gender, class and ethnicity are renegotiated through internal and cross-border migration. This research involves multi-sited itinerant ethnography in five cities in Bolivia, Argentina and Spain with migrants from Cochabamba, Bolivia. The analytical approach encompasses a transnational and multi-scalar approach to the study of social change through migration with the aim of investigating whether labour migration provides avenues for greater gender equality. I have published on this in various journals (Gender, Place and Culture, 2013, Environment and Planning A, 2011, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, 2007), and in a monograph Gender, Migration and Social Transformation: Intersectionality in Bolivian Itinerant Migrations (Routledge, 2019). 

Migration and development. As a broader project on the relationship between migration and development, I have written on intersectionality, migration and development (Progress in Development Studies, 2014 and Geography Compass 2013), and more recently, co-edited the Routledge Handbook of Migration and Development, with Professor Ronald Skeldon (published 2020). The Handbook includes 55 chapters from over 60 contributors.

Migrants and the right to the city. This research looks at the lives of migrants in informal settlements, their everyday practices and their articulation with different civil society organisations with the aim of assessing the extent to which they might have a 'right to the city'. This research is based on my fieldwork with migrants in Buenos Aires in 2003 and 2008, (Urban Studies, 2015), which I have extended through a cities@manchester project in 2013, in collaboration with Jeronimo Montero Bressan (Environment and Planning A, 2018).

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 1 - No Poverty
  • SDG 5 - Gender Equality
  • SDG 8 - Decent Work and Economic Growth
  • SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
  • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions
  • SDG 17 - Partnerships for the Goals

External positions

External Examiner: MSc Programme, Gender Development and Globalisation, London School of Economics & Political Science (University of London)

1 Sept 20191 Sept 2022

External Examiner: MSc Development Studies, Birkbeck, University of London

1 Sept 20141 Sept 2016

Research Beacons, Institutes and Platforms

  • Global inequalities
  • Global Development Institute
  • Manchester Urban Institute
  • Manchester Institute for Collaborative Research on Ageing


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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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