Federico is a Serra Hunter lecturer in ecological economics and political ecology at the University of Barcelona. He is also associate researcher at ICTA UAB, where he used to be the deputy coordinator of the ERC research project EnvJustice that aims to study and contribute to the global environmental justice movement. His research focuses on first, how natural resources and environmental impacts are unequally distributed, and second, on how to move towards more socially just and ecologically sustainable worlds. His work aims to inform theory on how environments are shaped, politicized and contested.

He has contributed to an ecological and cultural critique of (sustainable) development, and the search for alternatives to it. The proposal that he has explored more in depth is ‘degrowth’, the hypothesis that we can live well, with less. Degrowth is an attempt to re-politicise debates about desired socio-environmental futures and an example of an activist-led science. On this, he co-edited the book “Degrowth: A Vocabulary for a New Era” (with Giorgos Kallis and Giacomo D’Alisa), that has been translated into 10 different languages. More recently, he published also “Pluriverse: A Post-Development Dictionary” (with Ashish Kothari, Arturo Escobar, Ariel Salleh and Alberto Acosta) an exciting volume of over 100 essays on transformative alternatives to the currently dominant processes of globalized development, including its structural roots in modernity, capitalism, state domination, and masculinist values.


Federico collaborates with IPE in challenging the modernist ontology of universalism in favour of a multiplicity of possible worlds. The research project aims to question the core assumptions of the development discourse (e.g. economic growth, material progress, instrumental rationality, the centrality of markets, universality, modernity and its binaries, and so forth). It focuses on the conceptualisation and practice of radical alternatives to ‘development’ that intend to re-politicise the debate on the much-needed socio-ecological transformation. The project contributes to the post-development research agenda on how to illuminate pathways towards a synergic articulation of the alternatives to development. The horizon is the Pluriverse, that is “a world where many worlds fit” as the Zapatista say. 


Kothari, A., Salleh, A., Escobar, A., Demaria, F. and Acosta Alberto (eds) (2019) Pluriverse: A Post-Development Dictionary. Delhi: Authors Up Front / Tulika / Columbia University Press.

Scheidel, A., Temper, L., Demaria, F., Martínez-Alier, J. (2018) Ecological distribution conflicts as forces for sustainability: an overview and conceptual framework. Sustainability Science 13(3): 585-598.

Beling, A., Vanhulst, J., Demaria, F., Rabid, V., Carballo, AE and Pelenc, J. (2018). Discursive synergies for a ‘Great Transformation’ towards sustainability: pragmatic contributions to a necessary dialogue between Human Development, Degrowth, and Buen Vivir. Ecological Economics 144: 304-313.

Demaria, F. and Kothari, A. (2017) The Post-Development Dictionary agenda: paths to the pluriverse. Third World Quarterly 38: 2588-2599.

Kothari, A., Demaria, F., Acosta, A. (2015) Alternatives to Sustainable Development and the Green Economy: Buen Vivir, Eco-Swaraj and Degrowth. Development57(3-4): 362-375.

D’Alisa, G., Demaria, F., Kallis, G. (2014) “Degrowth: a vocabulary for a new era”. Routdlege.

Demaria, F., Schneider, F., Sekulova, F., Martinez-Alier, J. (2013). What is degrowth? From an activist slogan to a social movement. Environmental Values 22 (2): 191-215.