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Dr. Raquel Rojas Scheffer

Rojas Scheffer, Raquel

Latin American Institute

Maria Sibylla Merian Centre Conviviality-Inequality in Latin America (Mecila)

Research Associate

Education

  • Ph.D. in Sociology, Freie Universität Berlin, 2019.
  • M.A. in Social Sciences, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, 2014.
  • Specialist in Social Sciences with major in Social Development, Latin-American Faculty of Social Sciences - FLACSO Paraguay, 2011.
  • B.A. in Social Sciences, National University of Asunción - Paraguay, 2009.

 

Research & Profesional Experience

  • Associate Researcher, Maria Sibylla Merian Centre Conviviality-Inequality in Latin America (Mecila), since 2020.
  • Doctoral student at the International Research Training Group "Between Spaces. Movements, Actors and Representations of Globalization", Institute for Latin American Studies, Freie Univerität Berlin, 2016-2019.
  • Associate Researcher at Centro de Estudios y Educación Popular Germinal (Centre of Studies and Popular Education Germinal), Asunción - Paraguay, since 2008.
  • General Director, Fundación Casa de la Juventud (Youth’s House Foudation), Asunción – Paraguay, 2011-2012.
  • General Coordinator, Fundación Casa de la Juventud (Youth’s House Foudation), Asunción – Paraguay, 2009-2011.

 

Fellowships & Scholarships

  • Level I Researcher for Social Sciences, National Council of Science and Technology Paraguay, 2018.
  • Scholarship by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) for travels and congress participation, 2018.
  • Scholarship by the International Labour and Employment Relations Association (ILERA), to take part in the 18th ILERA World Conference in Seoul, 2018.
  • Scholarship by the International Research Group “Work and Human Lifecycle in Global History”, Humboldt University Berlin, to take part in the Summer Academy “Labour, Rights and Mobility” in Buenos Aires, 2017.
  • Research stay, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Centro de Investigación y Estudios Superiores en Antropología Social and El Colegio de México, Mexico City, 2017
  • Fellowship at the International Research Training Group "Between Spaces. Movements, Actors and Representations of Globalization", Scholarship by the German Research Foundation, 2016-2019.
  • Scholarship by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), Master studies at the Humboldt University in Berlin, 2012-2014.

Research interests

  • Social Inequality
  • Gender Studies and Intersectional Analysis
  • Social movements
  • Political Sociology
  • Labor relations
  • Domestic- and care work
  • Conviviality
  • Qualitative social research

 

Current project

  • Social consequences of the spread of the novel coronavirus in the Berlin Metropolitan region, Maria Sibylla Merian Centre Conviviality-Inequality Latin America (Mecila), 2020-2021.

 

Concluded doctoral project

“Entangled Inequalities and Network Building. Organizational Experiences of Paid Domestic Workers in Uruguay and Paraguay”         

Advisors: Prof. Dr. Sérgio Costa (FU Berlin), Prof. Dr. Barbara Fritz (FU Berlin)

Funding: German Research Foundation (Graduate School "Between Spaces", 2016-2019)

 

The research focused on paid domestic workers’ organizations in Uruguay and Paraguay, more specifically, the networks they build with different types of actors within and across national borders. Analyzing data from interviews, participant observations, press articles and documents produced by the workers’ organizations and their allies, the study reconstructs the development of domestic workers’ organizations and the introduction of their claims into the political agenda on a national level from 2005 onwards, which linked them to a broader transnational context.

The analytical framework establishes a dialogue between literature on social movements and social inequalities. Drawing on the characteristics and specificities of domestic work, the research discusses how structural and contextual particularities shape the organizational experiences of domestic workers. More specifically, it analyzes how the entanglements of different axes, dimensions and scales of inequality that cut across this occupational field shape the networks they build, their interventions, and the way in which they present their claims. Different perspectives are thus combined in order to address questions about the interaction between actors’ agency and limitations of the social structure.

I argue that the confluence of inequalities in the experience of domestic workers has an ambivalent effect on them, oscillating between discrimination and political agency. These relations of inequality have an impact on the involvement of different actors in their network of activism, affecting the dynamics within the network as well. In this sense, the differences among actors do not disappear when a coalition is formed, but they remain present although the (re)production of inequalities can be mitigated or subverted. The contrasting of different cases (Uruguay and Paraguay) highlights that, although the general dynamic is the same – inasmuch as inequalities that cut across domestic work tend to originate in the same regimes – it takes place in a context with its own characteristics, and each particular sounding board makes the same chords resonate with different tones depending on the interpretation of the local actors.

 

Other concluded research projects

  • Gender equality in Paraguayan trade unions, funded by Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung, 2020.
  • Made in Paraguay. Evolution of Labour Relations in a Globalized World, funded by CONACYT-Paraguay (National Council of Science and Technology), 2017-2020.
  • The Revival of the Paraguayan Student Movement and the New Female Leadership, funded by CONACYT-Paraguay, 2016-2019.
  • Political Attitudes and Practices of the Paraguayan electorate, funded by CONACYT-Paraguay, 2016-2018.

Peer-reviewed journal articles

2020. Same Work, Same Value? Paid Domestic Workers' and Housewives' Struggles for Rights in Uruguay and Paraguay. In Current Sociology OnlineFirst (ISSN 0011-3921)

2020. Sin relación aparente. Partidos Políticos e Ideología en Paraguay. In POSTData 25(2), 487-518 (ISSN N 1515-209X; co-authored with Marcello Lachi)

2020. Vínculos afectivos y necesidades materiales. La práctica clientelar en Paraguay. In Revista electrónica de estudios latinoamericanos e-l@tina 18 (70), 1-20 (ISSN 1666-9606; co-authored with Marcello Lachi)

2020. Desencuentros y conflictos entre actores colectivos en la industria paraguaya. In Revista de la Facultad de Ciencias Económicas-UNNE Argentina 25(2), 227-137 (ISSN 1668-6365; co-authored with Marcello Lachi)

2018. Paraguay como eslabón en la cadena de valor mundial. Construcción de un marco analítico para estudiar relaciones laborales en tiempos globalizados. In Revista Novapolis 14, 35-58 (ISSN 2077-5172)

2018. Entre la tradición y el afecto: La identificación partidaria en Paraguay. In Revista Novapolis 13, 11-42.

2016. El diálogo social tripartito en Paraguay, 25 años de intentos y escasos éxitos. In Revista Novapolis 10, 117-140 (co-authored with Marcello Lachi)

2015. Interpretando el ‘Nuevo Rumbo’. Elementos para evaluar el proceso de reestructuración del modelo socioeconómico paraguayo impulsado por el Gobierno de Horacio Cartes. In Revista Novapolis 9, 77-108 (co-authored with Marcello Lachi)

2015. Por su propio bien. Condicionalidad y la imagen de la población pobre en políticas sociales. In Revista Novapolis 8, pp. 73-101

2014. Programa de Transferencias Monetarias Condicionadas: ¿Puerta de entrada a derechos sociales? Un análisis a partir del Programa Tekoporã. In REVICSO Vol. 1, 37-57. (ISSN/ISBN: 2409-1189)

 

Book chapters

2021 (in press). Essential yet undervalued. Paid domestic work, migration and the struggle for labor rights in Uruguay and Paraguay. In The role of migration in global value chains, edited by Ximena Alba and Bruno Miranda. Berlin: Walter Frey.

2021 (accepted). Entangled Inequalities and Network Building: Organizational Experiences of Paid Domestic Workers in Uruguay and Paraguay. In Between Fault Lines and Front Lines: Shifting Power in an Unequal World, edited by Katja Hujo and Maggie Carter. London: UNRISD/Zed Books.

2019. De Asunción a Ginebra: Trabajo doméstico remunerado y redes de activismo laboral en Paraguay. In Giros espacio-temporales: Repensando los entrelazamientos globales desde América Latina, edited by Diana Marisol Hernández Suárez, Luis Aguirre, Carolin Loysa, Brenda Macías Sánchez and Joanna Moszczynska. Berlin: Walter Frey, 47-64 (ISBN 978-3-946327-16-5).

 

Monographs

2020. Relaciones Laborales en la Industria Paraguaya. Cambios y continuidades en tiempos globalizados. Asunción: Arandurã (ISBN: 978-99967-997-2-3; co-authored with Marcello Lachi)

2019. Luchas de Estudiantes. El Renacer del Movimiento Estudiantil Secundario y el Nuevo Liderazgo Femenino 2013-2017. Asunción: Arandur. (ISBN: 978-99967-972-0-0; co-authored with Marcello Lachi)

2018. Correligionarios. Actitudes y Prácticas Políticas del Electorado Paraguayo. Asunción: Arandurã (ISBN: 978-99967-10-02-5; co-authored with Marcello Lachi)

2017. Diálogo Social, Contratación Colectiva y Tripartismo en Paraguay. Asunción: Arandurã (ISBN: 978-99967-53-60-2; co-authored with Marcello Lachi)

 

Working- & Conference Papers

2020. Physically Close, Socially Distant. Paid Domestic Work and (Dis-)encounters in Latin America’s Private Households. In Mecila Working Papers Series No. 27. São Paulo: MECILA.

2020. Articulating Differences and Inequalities. Paid Domestic Workers’ and Housewives’ Struggles for Rights in Uruguay and Paraguay. In Mecila Working Papers Series. No. 21,São Paulo: MECILA.

2020. Sindicalismo Paraguayo y Participación de Mujeres. Avances y Desafíos. In Trabajo y Justicia Social, Friedrich-Ebert Stiftung (SBN 978-987-4439-47-5)

2018. Entangled Inequalities and Network Building: Organizational Experiences of Paid Domestic Workers in Uruguay and Paraguay. In UNRISD Conference Papers. Geneva: UNRISD.

2015. El programa de Transferencias Monetarias Condicionadas Tekoporã en Paraguay: ¿Lucha contra la pobreza y desigualdad o por espacios de poder político. In Derecho en América Latina, ¿corrector o (re)productor de desigualdades?Working Paper desiguALdades.net No. 81, edited by Manuel Góngora Mera, Sérgio Costa, Guilherme Leite Gonçalves, 160-179.

 

Presentations at International Events

Network Building and Ethnic Divides. Organizational Experiences for Paid Domestic Workers in Uruguay and Paraguay. Delivered at the International Conference Care-Migration-Gender. Ambivalent Inter-dependencies from a Transdisciplinary Perspective organized by the Center for Transdisciplinary Gender Studies and the Institute for European Ethnology at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, in Berlin on January 31st, 2019.

Entangled Inequalities and Network Building. Organizational experiences of Paid Domestic Workers in Uruguay and Paraguay. Delivered at the United Nations Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD) Conference: Overcoming Inequalities in a Fractured World: Between Elite Power and Social Mobilization, in Geneva on November 9th, 2018.

Building networks, bridging divides. Organizational Experiences of Paid Domestic Workers in Uruguay and Paraguay. Delivered at the 18th International Labour and Employment Relations Association (ILERA) World Congress, in Seoul, South Korea, on July 25th, 2018.

2017. Paid Domestic Work: Entangled Inequalities and Organizational Experiences in Uruguay and Paraguay. Delivered at the Summer Academy Labour, Rights and Mobility organized by the International Research Center - Work and Human Lifecycle in Global History at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, in Buenos Aires, Argentina, on November 3rd, 2017.