Cristina Flesher Fominaya has an MA and PhD in Sociology from the University of California, Berkeley, and a BA summa cum laude in International Relations from the University of Minnesota. She has won numerous international scholarships and prizes including the Marie Curie IEF, the National Science Foundation Fellowship, the German Marshall Fellowship and the Leo Lowenthal Prize for Outstanding Paper in Culture and Critical Theory (awarded by the University of California, Berkeley). She worked as Assistant Professor in the Department of Sociology and Political Science in the Universidad Carlos III de Madrid. She currently works as Senior Lecturer in the Department of Sociology at the University of Aberdeen and is also a Senior Marie Curie Fellow at the National University Ireland, Maynooth, where she is conducting a 2 year comparative research project “Contentious Politics in an Age of Austerity”. Her long term interest in alternative social movements has led to ethnographic research on the Spanish Green Parties, the British Anti-Roads Movement, Anti-globalization Networks in western Europe, and anti-auterity resistance, with a special emphasis on Spain's 15-M movement. She has a particular interest in autonomous social movement groups, and the possibilities and challenges of autonomous movement. Her work analyzes, among other things, the dynamics of participatory democracy within movement groups, collective identity formation, and the impact of digital media and ICTs on social movement groups and mobilization, and the dynamics of new "hybrid" parties such as Podemos..
She is the author of Social Movements and Globalization (2014 Palgrave) which has been called "The best book on the new movements for radical social change in the 21st century ..."(Professor John Foran, University of California, Santa Barbara) and has published widely on social movements. She contributes to Open Democracy and other media, and is interviewed frequently by international media outlets on Podemos and Spanish social movements and new municipalist party/coalitions.. She is a founding editor of Interface Journal an is an editor of Social Movement Studies Journal.