80% of Catalans with mental disorders have been discriminated in some area of their life due to their mental health state


On September 30th we presented the study 'Stigma and discrimination in mental health in Catalonia 2016' at the Palau de la Generalitat, ceremony presided over by the Hon. Ms. Neus Munté, Minister of the Presidency of the Generalitat of Catalonia.

The study is the result of an investigation conducted by Obertament, the Autonomous University of Barcelona and Spora Sinergies, and developed with the collaboration of Obra Social ”la Caixa" and Janssen, in order to explore and identify psychosocial factors that are related to stigma and discrimination faced by people with a mental disorder in Catalonia.

Happy Holidays!!

Felicitacio Spora

It’s been 10 years since we started as a spin-off of Research Park at the UAB, and we are happy to keep on working on what we most enjoy :)

We wish you happy holidays and a Happy new Year!!

Innovations in urban planning through participatory budgeting

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On July 8, 2015 we had the opportunity to present the methodological innovations developed in Haiti, at the 1st International Congress of Ibero-American Anthropology (AIBR) in Madrid. Throw the example of the Master Plan of Campêche project (Port au Prince, Haiti), made by the WE-SPORA group in 2013, we can share the main challenges we face in the study of urban planning, in the context of emergency and humanitarian crisis:

  • Coordination of multiple stakeholders (government, international NGOs, organized citizens and citizenship unorganized) in the design, implementation and evaluation of the Urban Development Plan.
  • Planning actions that respond to short-term needs (emergency) consistent to improve the quality of life in the long term (development).

To meet these challenges we employ innovative methodological tools in the field of urban planning in order to design efficient and realistic urban interventions:

  • The development of participatory methodologies "ad hoc": Citizen Multi-Actoral Planning for Action. In this case, we create specific participatory platforms for a multi-stakeholders making decisions process, involving the main stakeholders at all levels: citizenship (including civil society organizations and unorganized citizenship); government institutions (including ministries, administrations and public enterprises) and international NGO and agencies involved in the same area. The articulation of the needs, objectives and priorities of each group of actors was essential to ensure coherence and effectiveness of interventions designed.
  • The introduction of participatory budgeting as a tool for planning and prioritization of urban interventions. In this case, some lines of intervention on the long-term were designed and 10 strategic and immediate actions were prioritized, using criteria and indicators of quality of life for their prioritization. The involvement of the community in the definition of interventions and the prioritization of actions allowed the focus on long-term development beyond the basic needs of the emergency context.

These questions, challenges and reflections were presented in the panel "Sustainability of development policies in Haiti: local stakeholders, government and third sector" within the 1st International Congress of Ibero-American Anthropology (AIBR), held in Madrid from 7 and July 10, 2015. Here you can see the entire presentation (in Spanish):

How do we approach violence within homosexual couples?

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One of the historical struggles of the feminist movement has been denouncing violence against women, accounting for the socio-cultural system which promotes and reproduces inequalities between men and women. Moving male violence from the private and invisible field to the public sphere, as a social and common problem that we must confront as a whole, has been one of its victories.

This struggle has been accompanied by far-reaching theoretical production in the search for an explanatory framework to account for the gear that maintains and reproduces inequality and violence: the patriarchal social structure. Also, the theoretical and academic discussion has been incorporated in the various declarations and policy frameworks at international, national and regional level, with consequent changes in the terms and explanatory frameworks. We note terms such as "violence against women", which appears in the declaration proclaimed by the United Nations Assembly in 1993; the term "domestic violence", included in the Spanish legislation in 2003, to make way for the term "gender violence" a year later in the Organic Law 1/2004, and the term "male violence" (violencia machista) collected in the Catalan legislation through the Law 5/2008.

The package, regulatory and legal frameworks that have been deployed in recent years are an example of the strong momentum that have taken public policies in the fight against this kind of violence. Similarly, the creation of services and resources aimed at addressing such situations -from prevention to care and recovery of those women affected by this problem- account for the institutional will to find an answer.

However, the strong association of male violence to patriarchy could leave out of the focus other types of violence, which would call into question the basis of this premise. We refer to the violence exercised in the field of homosexual couples, whether they are both women or men, both cis or trans . What explanatory framework can help us understand the violence within sex-affective relationships, especially when they are not exercised by "the man" or against "the woman"? The theoretical debate on this axis offers diffuse answers to this problem, which appears as an emerging need to be more visible.

Can we assume that patriarchy runs through power relations beyond sex-gender system, impregnating the whole society on hierarchical codes under the supremacy of the androcentric model of the white man? Or would it be better to reject the explanation that violence is only an expression of patriarchy, to understand it as a phenomenon that emerges within sex-affective relationships without distinction of gender, in which a drift occurs towards relations of domination and violence?

Beyond patriarchy, the heteronormative family model formulated under the idea of ​​romantic love can open other conceptual doors. Building relationships where possession, exclusivity and jealousy have a place, as synonyms for love, also involves mechanisms of coercion of freedom of each one. In this sense, the heteronormative-couple-and-romantic-love model can transcend the gender axis to fit into a relational dynamics. And homophobia can have an impact while increasing the vulnerability of those people affected by this problem, as a double victimization.

The fact is that the lack of a theoretical framework hinders the articulation of public resources and the ability to respond appropriately. Different LGTB groups are claiming for the visibility of this problem, which now finds itself with no support on a legal and institutional level, and are bringing forth the concept of "intra-gender violence" as a new starting point to define these situations.

Gran Dinar Barcelona · Feeding the 4k!

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4 tons of recovered food, more than 150 volunteers, 4115 portions of food served, and the presence of dozens of organizations and projects against food waste.

Gran Dinar (big lunch) 2014, held in the Plaça dels Angels in Barcelona on 22th November, sought to provoke a change in the perception of food waste by the citizens and officials responsible for the cycle of food .

More than 4 tons of food were recovered from fields or wholesalers that there were going to be harvested, cleaned and cooked by hundreds of volunteers and cooks by the Alicia Foundation, and were served in the form of vegetable soup or salad fruit. The uncooked surpluses were "adopted" by attendees or donated to nearby soup kitchens.

This festive event we wanted to patent a serious economic, social and environmental problem that affects all of society that asks the involvement of all. We have put on the table the fact that in Catalonia annually about 260,000 tons of food are wasted and that we must act to get reduce this figure.

You can see a video of the event here !: