Prof. Dr. Encarnación Gutiérrez-Rodríguez

Research Focus

The members of the professorship are interested in decolonial perspectives of social analysis and theory; critical theory, feminist and queer theory; and epistemologies of the South as well as critical migration and racism studies.

In terms of content, this is done by focusing on thematic fields such as coloniality and migration/refugee, global inequality, racial capitalism, (neo-)extractivism, memory-political struggles, intersectional structural violence, material feminisms, solidarity, conviviality and creolisation. Research projects take place on topics such as migration, feminism and memory politics; human rights and precarious/undocumented migration; affect and labour; city, transculturation and conviviality; institutional racism at the university.

Currently, Prof. Dr. Encarnación Gutiérrez-Rodríguez is working on issues of decolonial mourning, creolising conviviality, institutional racism and affect in higher education, human rights and the coloniality of migration.

Human rights Discourse in Political Protests of Refugees and Undocumented Migrants in Germany and the US

  • Research Group: Human Rights Discourse in Migration Societies (MeDiMi
  • Funding: DFG
  • Duration: October 2022-September 2026
  • Principal Investigator: Prof. Dr. Encarnación Gutiérrez-Rodríguez
This research project aims at examining human rights discursive practices of refugee and migrant activists in the context of undocumented and precarious migration. It focuses on political interventions and articulations from the 1990s until today in Germany and in the USA, in particular on how political self-organized migrant and refugee groups address and denounce the tension between human rights as norms and their factual implementation.
The idea of the project emerged from the observation that human (and civil) rights are not merely given or conclusive. They are constantly disputed, invoked, and evoked by self-organized political groups and organizations of persons subjected to migration and asylum laws constraining their access to basic rights such as freedom of movement, housing, education, health, work, and social welfare. This project sheds light on different understandings of human rights as rights addressing the dehumanizing effects of asylum and migration control policies, as well as on alternative visions of justice, juridical recognition, and political participation. In doing so, the project points to a rather unexplored entanglement between asylum and migration control policies and (neo-/post-)colonial global inequalities.
From a position of politically engaged researchers and activists, the research team takes a feminist, anti-racist, decolonial perspective on knowledge production, regarding research as an instrument that should benefit refugees and migrant movement activists. The research team works methodologically on two levels. It conducts a critical analysis of digital archives in the outlined research field, while it also engages with community-oriented and participatory research.
Further information:

18-20 September 2024

​MeDiMi Conference - Exploring the Intersection of Human Rights and Migration in Law, Politics, and Everyday Life

MeDiMi Conference Flyer
The multidisciplinary conference aims to explore the intersection of human rights and migration. It is open to researchers at all career stagesand of all backgrounds – from undergraduate and doctoral students to senior academics, experienced practitioners, and activist voices. Participants are invited to join us in discussing a wide variety of legal struggles, issues of in-/exclusion, and (self-)representations of actors in migration societies. Rather than providing preliminary results and theoretical fi ndings from our own research, we want to listen and learn what others have found out about the dynamics of humanrightization: the practices of human rights movements, the role of human rights law, the interplay of human rights and democracy, and the making of human rights consciousness in migration societies.

Registration is required via the MeDiMi website.

The number of places is limited.

The conference is an in-person event.
Sessions A, F, and I will be livestreamed.
The complete program, a book of abstracts and
bios, and further organizational details are available at

Research Group “Human Rights Discourse in
Migration Societies" (MeDiMi)@

Venue:Justus Liebig University Giessen:
                                                                           Campus Law and Economics
                                                                           Hörsaalgebäude: Bar Menachem Hörsaal (HS 5)
                                                                           Licher Str. 68 | 35394 Giessen

                                                                           Date: 18-20.09.2024

Completed Research Projects

Erasmus+project BRIDGES (Building Inclusive Societies: Diversifying Knowledge and Tackling Discrimination through Civil Society Participation in Universities), 2019-2022.

DAAD- International Study and Training Partnership with the University of West Indies in Trinidad and Tobago, 2017-2019.

Hessian Ministry of Science and Art / Research Project: Migrant Feminism in the German Women's Movement (1985-2000), 2018-2020.

Hessian Ministry of Science and Arts /Research Project: BRANCH OUT (2016-2018), 2016-2018.

DFG project and international workshop: Understanding the Local Entanglement of Global Inequalities (2017-2018).


Membership in Advisory Boards and research Networks

International Advisory Board of the BMWF Network Project  Mecila (Maria Sybilla Merian Centre Conviviality-Inequality in Latin America), FU Berlin/São Paulo.

Commission of the Ministery of Science and Arts of the Land in Hesse (Hessisches Ministerium für Wissenschaft und Kunst) on “Koloniales Erbe in Hessen / Colonial Heritage in Hesse", headed by Professor Dr. Benedikt Stuchtey, Philipps-University Marburg, and Professor Dr. Hubertus Büschel, University Kassel.

Revaluing Care in the Global Economy (RCGE) Advisory Board Member, Duke Universtity.

Council of Migration (Rat für Migration), Berlin.

Academic Board of RN32 'Sociology of Migration', European Sociology Association (ESA).

Leading Role in Professional Bodys 

Member of the International Advisory Board of the research project Intersectional Border Struggles and Disobedient Knowledge in Activism (KNOWACT), University of Helsinki, Finland, 2019-2022.       

Principal Investigator at the Graduate School of the Study of Culture (GCSC), Justus-Liebig-University, 2016-2022.

Chair of the Section of Women and Gender Studies in the German Sociology Association (DGS), 2014-2018.

​Doctoral Projects

Doctoral projects on the following topics have been supervised so far: Racism, Migration and Labour; Belonging and Material Culture; Solidarity Movements and Decoloniality; Refugee Strike and Marcuse; Indigenous Feminism and Neo-Extractivism; Decolonial Perspectives and Peace Negotiations in Colombia; Insitutional Discrimination and Transculturality in Higher Education; Global Learning and Decolonial Perspectives; Feminist-Intersectional Perspectives on Everyday Violence; Coloniality of Border Regimes; BPoC and Migrant Memory Politics of Racial Critical Struggles; Intersex and Discourses of Naturalisation; Queer Feminist Perspectives in Social Science Quantitative Methods; New Feminism and Postmigrant Pop Culture; Latin American Migration, Labour Market and Citizenship in Spain.

während Gültigkeit

MeDiMi Conference 18-20 September

Justus Liebig University Giessen

Click here to register!

Click here for program, book of abstracts and bios, and organizational details