Silvia Olvera

Silvia Olvera


Hello, my name is Silvia, I am from Mexico, and my career is in the field of sustainability and rural development with a focus on fostering female participation in sustainable economic activities in the Lacandon Rainforest, in Chiapas, Mexico. 

My background is on Social Anthropology and my master's degree is in Science in Natural Resources and Rural Development. Now, I am in the first year of my PhD program at the School of Earth and Environment, at the University of Leeds. The research I am working on is titled “Performing fundamental values using an intersectionality perspective to foster inclusion in environmental governance".


Research interests

Degradation of natural resources, poverty, and social discrimination are just some of the consequences of the unfair environmental decision-making in rural communities in the Global South. One difficulty in achieving just decisions is the lack of representativeness of the diversity of values from the local people in decision-making processes, as a result of the exclusion that some of them have suffered on the basis of their economic status, gender, religion, and ethnicity. Using an intersectionality perspective from Feminist Political Ecology and borrowing from Ecological Economics’ knowledge base on values, this research will develop the understanding about the creation and use of shared values frames to gain representativeness in the environmental decision-making and therefore inclusive and just environmental governance. For the identification of the shared values frames that might promote local representativeness in the decision-making processes, this Ph.D. will use, a creative method as a mechanism for people in rural communities to share their values regarding natural resource management while reflecting about norm and rules that constrain their participation in environmental decision-making. The identification of constraint in their participation will bring them in processes of empathy that might work as the base to the creation of shared values frame. This creative method will be applied to a case study in Chiapas (Mexico), with the aim of understanding the effects of shared values frames activated by critical performance in the construction of a sense of local representativeness to promote inclusion in environmental governance.

Research groups and institutes

  • Sustainability Research Institute
  • Environment and Development