Biography of María Ángeles Durán Heras.

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María Ángeles Durán Heras.

María Ángeles DURÁN

Madrid, 1942

With an undergraduate degree in Political Science and Economics and a doctorate in Political Science from the Complutense University of Madrid, she has received honorary doctorates from the Autonomous University of Madrid, the University of Valencia and the University of Granada.

Her Ph.D. thesis, entitled “Women’s Work”, marked the beginning of systematic research into the social factors determining women’s lives in Spain. She has spent time conducting research and lecturing at the Universities of Michigan, Cambridge and Washington (Seattle), the Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro, the College of Spain in France and the National Autonomous University of Mexico. She works with a number of international organisations, including UNESCO, WHO, UN Women and ECLAC.

Her major field of research is the borderline between sociology and economics, especially unpaid work. A pioneer in both areas, she was the first woman in Spain to obtain a professorship in Sociology. In 1987, she joined the Spanish National Research Council as a research lecturer. She is currently continuing her work, ad honorem, at the Centre for Social and Human Sciences.

She has been Chairperson of the Spanish Federation of Sociology (1998-2001), a member of the executive committee of the International Sociological Association, director of the Seminar on Women’s Studies and the UNESCO Chair in Policies on Gender and Equal Rights between Women and Men (2010-2013) at the Autonomous University of Madrid.

The recognition for her work extends beyond academic borders: she has received, among other awards, the Pascual Madoz National Economic, Social and Legal Sciences Research Award, the Medal of Extremadura, the Gold Medal for Work Merit, the Juana Azurduy Award from the Senate of the Republic of Argentina, the Clara Campoamor Award from the Madrid City Council, she has been made an Honorary Member of the Madrid College of Architects, and received the Health Culture Award (ADEPS), the Messengers of Peace Award and a Protagonists award from the communications media in the researchers category. In 2004, the Autonomous University of Madrid instituted the María Ángeles Durán Award to promote theoretical and methodological creativity and enhance the quality of research in gender studies.

She is the author of some two hundred publications and her books include most notably: “Los costes invisibles de la enfermedad” (The invisible costs of illness); “El trabajo no remunerado en la economía global” (Unpaid work in the global economy); “Si Aristóteles levantara la cabeza” (If Aristotle raised his head; “La investigación sobre el uso del tiempo” (Research into the use of time); “La ciudad compartida” (The shared city); and “La riqueza invisible del cuidado” (The invisible wealth of the world). An open proponent of action research, in her work she calls for both rigorous empirical observation and creative imagination and social commitment.