Gibrán Cruz Martínez

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Gibrán Cruz-Martínez is a Juan de la Cierva Research Fellow at the Institute of Public Goods and Policies, Spanish National Research Council (CSIC) and a Research Associate at the Chilean Institute of Municipal Studies, Universidad Autónoma de Chile. Before joining IPP-CSIC, he was affiliated to the University of Agder (Norway), and the Institute of the Americas, University College London (United Kingdom). He holds a PhD in Political Science from the Universidad Complutense (Spain). His work broadly speaking focuses on the development of emerging welfare states in Latin America and the Caribbean and its relationship to multidimensional poverty and inequality. In addition, his research interests include welfare regimes and social risks in marginalised communities, targeting versus universalism in social protection, and basic universal social pensions in low- and middle-income countries.

Gibrán is the author of several peer-reviewed articles in journals such as Social Indicators Research, Journal of International and Comparative Social Policy, Bulletin of Latin American Research, Poverty & Public Policy, Ageing International, Brazilian Journal of Latin American Studies, Política y Sociedad, and Relaciones Internacionales. His first monograph, published as an open access book, is titled ‘Produciendo Bienestar: Una mirada desde las comunidades marginadas en Puerto Rico’ (Dykinson, 2017). His second and most recent book 'Welfare and Social Protection in Contemporary Latin America', was published in Routledge in 2019.

He has been a visiting researcher or fellow at the University of Oxford (United Kingdom), Federal University of Pernambuco (Brazil), Lund University (Sweden), Centre for Social Research (Puerto Rico), the Comparative Research Programme on Poverty at the University of Bergen (Norway), and the Institute of Latin American Studies at the University of London (United Kingdom). He is also a member of the Editorial Board of Alternautas – an open access blog and Journal on Latin American critical development studies.


Research areas:

  • Comparative social policy
  • Social protection for development
  • Explanatory factors of welfare state development
  • Multidimensional poverty
  • Alternative actors in welfare-regimes
  • Social pensions
  • Latin America and the Caribbean


Recent publications


Cruz-Martínez, Gibrán (2019) Welfare and Social Protection in Contemporary Latin America. London: Routledge, p.288, ISBN: 9781138600119.

Cruz-Martínez, Gibrán (2017) Produciendo Bienestar: Una mirada desde las comunidadesmarginadas en Puerto Rico. Editorial Dykinson, p.144, ISBN: 978-84-9148-378-6. (OPEN ACCESS)


Journals (peer-reviewed)

Cruz-Martínez, Gibrán (2020) Rethinking universalism: Older-age international migrants and social pensions in Latin America and the Caribbean. Global Social Policy, Volume 20, Issue 1, pp. 39-59. DOI:

Cruz-Martínez, Gibrán (2019) Older‐Age Social Pensions and Poverty: Revisiting Assumptions on Targeting and Universalism. Poverty & Public Policy. Volume11, Issue1-2, pp. 31-56. DOI: SocArXiv: 

Cruz-Martínez, Gibrán (2018) A Bottom-up picture of intra-national welfare regimes: the case of marginalised communities in Puerto Rico. Journal of International and Comparative Social Policy. DOI: 10.1080/21699763.2018.1526696. SocArXiv: 

Cruz-Martínez, Gibrán (2018) Revenue-Generating Potential of Taxation for Older-Age Social Pensions. Ageing International, Volume 43, Issue 4, pp 415–437. DOI: 10.1007/s12126-017-9298-2. SocArXiv: 

Cruz-Martínez, Gibrán (2018) Introduction to the Special Issue: The Making of Caribbean Not-so-Natural Disasters. Alternautas, Vol 5, Issue 2, pp. 4-12. (OPEN ACCESS)

Cruz-Martínez, Gibrán (2017) Is there a common path that could have conditioned the degree of welfare state development in Latin America and the Caribbean? Economic and Political Conditions during the 1940’s-1970’s. Bulletin of Latin American Research, Volume 36, Issue 4 pp. 459-476. DOI: 10.1111/blar.12556. SocArXiv: 

Cruz-Martínez, Gibrán (2017) Welfare State Development, Individual Deprivations and Income Inequality: A time series crosssection analysis in Latin America (2000-2010). Social Indicators Research. Volume 134, Issue 3, pp 955–979. DOI: 10.1007/s11205-016-1465-4. SocArXiv: 

Cruz-Martínez, Gibrán (2016) Going Beyond Aggregated Measures in the Conditional Cash Transfer Programs: The Effective Coverage of Benefits and Beneficiaries. Cadernos PROLAM/ Brazilian Journal of Latin American Studies, Volume14, Issue 27, pp. 102-115. (OPEN ACCESS)

Cruz-Martínez, Gibrán (2015) Esfuerzo de bienestar y Pobreza desde el enfoque monetarista y de capacidades: Análisis trasnacional en América Latina y el Caribe (1990-2010). Política y Sociedad, Volume 52, Issue 3, pp 631-659. DOI: (OPEN ACCESS)

Cruz-Martínez, Gibrán (2015) losde Indicadores de Pobreza en Balance Alternativo  ODM para América Latina y el Caribe: ¿Medir el Éxito como Aceleración del Progreso o Consecución de las Metas? Relaciones Internacionales, 28, Febrero 2015, pp 11-36. (OPEN ACCESS)

Cruz-Martínez, Gibrán (2014) Welfare State Development in Latin America and the Caribbean (1970’s-2000’s)- Multidimensional Welfare Index, its methodology and results. Social Indicators Research, December 2014, Volume 119, Issue 3, pp 1295-1317. DOI: 10.1007/s11205-013-0549-7. SocArXiv: 


Special Issues

Cruz-Marínez, Gibrán, Fernández-Arrigoitia, Melissa, Ortiz Camacho, Janialy, & Román-Velazquez, Patria (2018) The Making of Caribbean Not-so-Natural Disasters. Alternautas, Vol 5, Issue 2, pp. 1-105. (OPEN ACCESS)


Book chapters

Cruz-Martinez G. & Cerev G. (2020) Global AgeWatch Index and Insights. In: Gu D., Dupre M. (eds) Encyclopedia of Gerontology and Population Aging. Springer, Cham, DOI:

Cruz-Martínez, Gibrán (2019) Comparative social policy in contemporary Latin America: concepts, theories and a research agenda. In Cruz-Martínez, G (Ed.) Welfare and Social Protection in Contemporary Latin America. London: Routledge, p.3-28

Cruz-Martinez, G.. (2019) Colonialism and Neocolonialism in Puerto Rico, In Ness, I. & Cope, Z. (eds) The Palgrave Encyclopedia of Imperialism and Anti-Imperialism, 2nd Edition, London: Palgrave. 


Policy Papers

Cruz-Martínez, Gibrán (2016) Means Testing vs. Universal Targeting: Assumptions of Efficiency and Affordability. Pension watch briefing 15, HelpAge International. 

Cruz-Martínez, G. Comprobación de ingresos vs. Acceso universal: Suposiciones sobre eficiencia y asequibilidad. Pension watch briefing 15 , HelpAge International.

Cruz-Martínez, Gibrán (2016) What is the cost of a basic universal social pension for Latin America and the Caribbean. The Latin American Diaries. 

Cruz-Martínez, Gibrán (2015) The Explanatory Power of the Welfare State Development on Poverty and Inequality in Latin America and the Caribbean. 28, CROP Poverty Brief Series. 


Other publications, Podcasts and Media Appeareances


Cruz-Martínez, G. Comparative social protection in contemporary Latin America., 16 de enero

Carballo, A.E., Cruz-Martínez, G. & Dupuits, E. (Re)thinking Political Ecology from Abya Yala. Undisciplined Environments, 14 de enero 


Foro Abierto. Puerto Rico; Gobernador Rosselló anuncia su dimisión, HispanTV, 25 July 2019. Participación de Cruz-Martínez, G., Vázquez, J.M., Arias-Borque, J. y González Manrique, E.

Cruz-Martínez, G. ¿Revolución de Verano en Puerto Rico? Agenda Pública, El País, 25 July 2019.

Cruz-Martínez, G. Creating fiscal space for universal social pensions: Taxing the top 1%., 18 March 2019.

Cruz-Martínez, G. Financiar pensiones sociales con impuestos a los superricos. The Conversation, 12 March 2019.


Cruz-Martínez, G., H. Vrana, & G. Goodwin. The Radical Americas Podcast, Episode 005.

Cruz-Martínez, G. Visualising Poverty Research | Interview with Gibrán Cruz-Martínez. Comparative Research Programme on Poverty, University of Bergen (Norway)

Cruz-Martínez, G., P. Roman, M. Fernández Arrigoitia and J. Ortiz Camacho. Hurricane Maria: Puerto Rico's Not-So-Natural Disaster. Roundtable in the Caribbean Series Seminar at UCL Institute of the Americas


Cruz-Martínez, G. Flexibilizing and Precarizing the Labor Market: a neoliberal agenda in Puerto Rico. Open Democracy, 2 February

Cruz-Martínez, G. Flexibilizando y precarizando el mercado laboral: una agenda neoliberal en Puerto Rico. Democracia Abierta, 2 Febrero

Cruz-Martínez, G.  “The end of colonialism in Puerto Rico? Evaluating the options in the 2017 political status referendum”. LSE Latin American Centre

Cruz-Martínez, G. “Will Puerto Rico Require Substantial Debt Forgiveness?”. Forbes. Q&A piece by Nathaniel Parish Flannery

Cruz-Martínez, G. “Puerto Rico needs relief from bondholders, foreign aid and quick US relief package”. Sputnik Radio. Interview.

Cruz-Martínez, G. “Will Puerto Rico Find A Way To Survive Its Debt Crisis?”. Forbes. Q&A piece by Nathaniel Parish Flannery

Cruz-Martínez, G. “You're Not Welcome: US Congress Ignores Puerto Rican Vote In Favor of Statehood”. Sputnik Radio. Interview.


Cruz-Martínez, G. Book Review: “Política Comparada, Manuel Sánchez de Dios, Madrid: Editorial Síntesis, 2012, 322 p. ISBN: 9788499589411, 22,50 €”. Revista de Investigaciones Políticas y Sociológicas, 2014 Vol.13 No.2


Cruz-Martínez, G. “Informe de 2015 sobre los ODM: Arbitrariedades y percepción del éxito en América Latina y el Caribe”. San Juan: Dialogo Digital.


Cruz-Martínez, G. “Del Welfare al Estado de Bienestar Universal”. San Juan: Dialogo Digital.


Cruz-Martínez, G.  “Urge la Necesidad de Reformar el Estado de  Bienestar”. San Juan: Dialogo Digital.