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Sebastián Carenzo

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Sebastián Carenzo holds a PhD in Anthropology from the University of Buenos Aires (UBA) and works for the National Council of Scientific and Technological Research (CONICET) as an Adjunt Researcher. He also is a professor in the Department of Social Sciences of the National University of Quilmes (UNQ) and teaches postgraduate courses in the Master in Social Economy of the National University of General Sarmiento (UNGS), in the Master of Documentary Cinema (Fundación Universidad del Cine) and in the Diploma of Strategic Design of Technologies for Inclusive and Sustainable Development (IESCT-UNQ).

His current line of research approaches from an ethnographic perspective practices of adaptation, design and construction of technologies developed by waste pickers in the metropolitan area of Buenos Aires through which they transform the discarded “garbage” into "materials" of different types, which then could be reused and recycled. In this way, he analyses what could be called a "Circular Economy from below", this is, a set of technological design and experimentation practices oriented to feed flows of reuse and recycling of materials, which are deployed not from scientific and technological institutions, but from worker´s cooperatives and community-based organizations. These practices are analysed from a socio-technical approach that deals with the material, epistemic, political and cognitive dimensions involved in these complex processes. It should be noted that this work has been done from a perspective of collaboration and commitment with people and organizations that bring together the waste pickers, not only in terms of accompanying their claims and construction of demands, but also to generate spaces for critical reflection on the practices and roles of all the people involved, including those who come from the academic field.

This work has been reflected in the publication of articles in prestigious national and international specialized journals, in chapters of books in specialized compilations, as well as in the direction of national and international research projects. In a complementary manner, its action has also involved training and technical advice to government agencies, NGOs and private companies on topics related to inclusive recycling and circular economy.

Work areas

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