Eric Griego, who is currently a Visiting Scholar at the Latin American and Iberian Institute at The University of New Mexico, has been named a Fulbright Scholar to Spain. 

The Fulbright Program is devoted to increasing mutual understanding between the people of the United States and people of other countries. It is the world’s largest and most diverse international educational exchange program and boasts as its alumni 62 Nobel Laureates, 89 Pulitzer Prize winners, 78 McArthur Fellows and thousands of leaders across private, public, and non-profit sectors. 

Eric Griego
Eric Griego

Griego, who, in his role as Visiting Scholar at the LAII, is organizing research on solidarity economy in the U.S., Spain and Latin America, will become part of a team of affiliated researchers.

“I will be working on building deeper ties with the research community in my field and at the University of Barcelona for the next academic year,” Griego said. He and his family leave for Spain in August.

Griego will join the University of Barcelona's Creativity, Innovation and Urban Transformation (CRIT) research group as a Visiting Researcher and Fulbright Scholar until May 2024. CRIT is an interdisciplinary team of scholars developing urban research under European and national, regional, and local funding, he explained. CRIT team members also teach in undergraduate, masters, and Ph.D. programs at the University of Barcelona in fields from sociology to economics. CRIT’s last featured book, Social Innovation and Urban Governance, offers an empirically-based discussion of how innovative actions of citizens and social movements contribute to local democratic governance. Contributions highlight how these actions create opportunities for ‘bottom-up’ civic participation in local institutions of governance.  

“My research interests and the focus of my dissertation on economic democracy, community power, and social capital at the local level make CRIT a natural fit for my research,” Griego noted. “CRIT will oversee my qualitative research project and assist with contacts and any research methods advice I need. My research design calls for a snowball sample of local officials, NGO leaders and activists in the Social and Solidarity Economy (SSE) movement in Barcelona and Catalonia.”

“The Fulbright for Spain is very competitive. That Eric received the award says a lot about the exemplary quality of his project and his record,” said Frances Hayashida, director of the LAII and professor of Anthropology at UNM.

Griego has been an instructor, researcher, analyst, and policymaker on applied public policy issues ranging from economic development to early childhood education at the local, state, national and international levels. From 2014-2020 he was a research fellow at the Center for Social Policy (formerly the Center for Health Policy) at the University of New Mexico, where his teaching and research focused on sustainable economic development, social capital, and public policy. He holds a bachelor’s degree in government and journalism from New Mexico State University, a master’s in public management from the University of Maryland, and a master’s and doctorate in political science from the University of New Mexico. He currently serves as associate chief of staff for Policy in Albuquerque Mayor Tim Keller’s office, where he leads the administration’s policy, legislative and government affairs efforts.

Upon his return to the U.S. in the summer of 2024, Griego said he looks forward to building a deeper relationship with LAII.

“I am honored to be a Fulbright Scholar and Visiting Researcher at the University of Barcelona's Creativity, Innovation and Urban Transformation research group. Barcelona is an international leader in promoting local economic democracy and supporting the Social and Solidarity Economy,” he noted.

LAII panel discussion Thursday open to all

Griego and a team of colleagues, including Santiago Eizaguirre Anglada, from the Department of Sociology and Creativity, Innovation and Urban Transformation at the University of Barcelona, will lead a virtual panel discussion about The Social and Solidarity Economy (SSE) Movement: Perspectives from the U.S., Spain and Latin AmericaThursday starting at noon. Register online. The event is free and open to the public.