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Manel Palos Pons

Doctoral Candidate

Manel Palos Pons is a PhD Candidate in the Department of Communication at UC San Diego. His current research is focused on the conflictive but productive relationship between populism and the mediatization process; including the role played by the state in creating (or not) conditions for a thriving democratic media. Manel's dissertation is centered on the Ecuadorean case, especially around Rafael Correa’s political and media reforms. Other areas of interest are nationalism (and its inseparable relationship with news media), journalistic professionalism, media’s political economy or political theory. His work follows a mixed methods approach, putting in practice ethnographic strategies (in-depth interviews, participant observation and discourse analysis, in particular) and content analysis supported by statistical methods. 

Before coming to San Diego, Manel was a journalist. Originally from Spain (with strong ties in Latin America), he worked for almost eight years in Mexico City (as a reporter and as an editor) in lifestyle magazines; prior to moving to North America, he was employed as a reporter in Spain for El País newspaper and for El Correo, a local paper in Seville.

Palos Pons, M. and Hallin, C. D. (2021) “Press freedom and media reform in a populist regime: How Ecuadorian journalists and policy actors see the Correa era”. International Journal of Communication 15, 1021–1038. (

Palos Pons, M (2021, September 13-16) “Populism Influence on Media Content: Polarization and Professionalization in Ecuador before and during Correa’s era.” International Journal of Press/Politics Conference, Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism at the University of Oxford.

Palos Pons, M. (2021, May 27-31) “Populism’s Genesis: The Role of Media and the Populist Campaign in Correa’s First Victory of 2006.” International Communication Association Annual Conference. BINACOM Panel.

Palos Pons, M. (2019, August 16-19) “Media Wars: preliminary results on mediatization and populism in Ecuador.” Summer School and Conference Political Discourse and the Mediatization of Politics in the Globalized World, Nizhny Novgorod, National Research University, Russia. 

Palos Pons, M. (2018, May 17) “Populism and media in Ecuador: first findings from the fieldwork.” CILAS Graduate Symposium, University of California San Diego.

Palos Pons, M. (2017, October 6-7) “Left-wing populism in Europe: The ‘lonely’ but ‘conscious’ case of Podemos.” The Neil Postman Conference on Mediated Populisms, New York University.

Palos Pons, M. (2017, September 1) “Populismo de izquierdas en Europa: el caso de Podemos.” Facultad Latinoamericana de Ciencias Sociales (Flacso), Quito, Ecuador.

Palos Pons, M. (2017, May 25-29) “Independence through media system: The formation of a differentiated Catalan media model.” International Communication Association Annual Conference, Political Communication Division, PhD Students Pre-Conference. 

Palos Pons, M. (2016, September 29-30) “News in Catalonia: The formation of a differentiated Catalan media system.” International Journal of Press/Politics Conference, Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism at the University of Oxford.

PhD Candidate, Communication. University of California, San Diego, 2015-

M. A. Political Science. Universidad Nacional de Educación a Distancia, Madrid, 2014.

M. A. Journalism. El País/Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, 2005.

B.A. Sociology. Universidad Complutense de Madrid, 2003.

B.A. Political Science. Universidad Complutense de Madrid, 2001.