Consuelo Béjares

I am a PhD student interested in sociology of education and critical youth studies. I graduate in Sociology in Chile and studied a master’s in social policy at the University of Melbourne. I have worked for several years in the intersection of research and policy to inform the advancement of equity principles in school education policies, mainly in the areas of privatization, class segregation and civic knowledge. Currently, I am looking at how young people living in marginalized urban areas of Santiago experience inclusion/exclusion, belonging and citizenship in times of rapid social change. I use an ethnographic and participatory methods approach.

My research project seeks to investigate how youth inhabiting spaces of the city that have endure long-lasting marginalisation navigate, in their daily school and urban experiences, the process of conceptualising and negotiating their own notions of identity, belonging, citizenship and democratic participation. I am interested in how this is shaped by historical exclusion intersecting with current accelerated transformations considering growing ethnic and racial diversity due to immigration as well as political conflicts in Chile.

Theoretically, I draw from Decolonial theory, as an essential framework for understanding social relations of class, race and gender in Latin America. Additionally, I use sociology of urban spaces to frame the configuration of cities in the Global South and specially the role of the neoliberal authoritarian state in shaping marginality and social life. Lastly, I build on youth studies to understand the construction of identities in response, as well as in resistance, to nation-state’s narratives of the unity, considering belonging at different scales – neighbourhood, city, nation- and differentiations between notions of belonging, lived citizenship, and normative citizenship. Considering these elements, I ask how they all converge in the school space as a place with democratic and transforming potential for building society and a as central space in the everyday meaning-making of young people.

In this research journey, I am also intending to critically engage with the process of knowledge production, particularly with questions of representation, power imbalance and methodological decisions. I use an ethnographic and participatory approach that consider the perspectives of teachers, school staff, and secondary students of two schools in Santiago. I specially focus on students’ perspectives through the use of conversation, photovoice and walking ethnography. The final stage of the research project considers a collective reflection workshop with the schools’ communities in order to include the research outcomes in the recently established citizenship curriculum in Chile which schools will be implementing soon.

I am a visiting doctoral student at Centro de Justicia Educacional – CJE [Centre for Educational Justice] in Santiago, Chile, as part of the research group on institutional inclusion and privatization:


Journal articles

Treviño, E., Villalobos, C. Béjares, C., Naranjo, E. (2019). Forms of youth political participation and educational system: The role of the school for 8th grade students in Chile. Young, 27(3), 279-303.

Treviño, E., Valenzuela, J.P., Villalobos, C., Béjares, C., Wyman, I. Allende, C. (2018). Agrupamiento por habilidad académica en el sistema escolar. Nueva evidencia para comprender las desigualdades del sistema educativo chileno [Ability Grouping in schools: New evidence to understand the inequalities of the Chilean educational system]. Revista Mexicana de Investigación Educativa, 23(76), 45-71.

Treviño, E., Béjares, C., Villalobos, C., & Naranjo, E. (2017). Influence of teachers and schools on students’ civic outcomes in Latin America. The Journal of Educational Research, 110(6), 604-618.

Book Chapters

Treviño, E., Béjares, C., Wyman, I., & Villalobos, C. (2018) Influence of teacher, student, and school characteristics on student’s attitudes toward diversity. In Sandoval-Hernandez, A., Isac, M, Miranda,D. (Eds).Teaching tolerance in a globalised world. Springer, p. 33-65.

Villalobos, C., Treviño, E., Wyman, I., & Béjares, C. (2018) School segregation of immigrant students. In Sandoval-Hernandez, A., Isac, M, Miranda,D. (Eds). Teaching tolerance in a globalised world. Springer, pp. 67-86

Treviño, E. Béjares, C., Villalobos, C. & Naranjo, E. (2017). Building Citizenship in the Schools in Chile, Colombia And Mexico: The Role of Teacher’s Practices and Attitudes. In: García-Cabrero, B., Sandoval-Hernández, A., Treviño-Villareal, E., Diazgranados Ferráns, S., Pérez Martínez, M. G. (Eds.). Civics and Citizenship: Theoretical Models and Experiences in Latin America (105-128). Rotterdam: Sense Publishers.

Policy Briefs

Treviño, E., Villalobos, C., Wyman, I., González, A., Béjares, C. y Cortés, T. (2018). De la segregación académica al interior del colegio a las buenas prácticas de inclusión: Situación de la educación media en Chile [From within-school academic segregation to inclusive good practices: The situation of secondary education in Chile]. CEPPE Policy Briefs, N°19, CEPPE UC.

Villalobos, C. & Béjares, C. (2017). Políticas de promoción y repitencia en Chile: recomendaciones desde una mirada comparada [Grade promotion and retention policies in Chile: recommendations from a comparative perspective]. CEPPE Policy Brief N°14, CEPPE UC.

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