skip to content


Centre of Latin American Studies

Pedro Mendes Loureiro

Dr Pedro Mendes Loureiro

Lecturer in Latin American Studies, CLAS/POLIS
MPhil Director, CLAS
Director of Studies and Fellow in Human, Social and Political Sciences (HSPS), Fitzwilliam College
+44 (0)1223 335394

PhD in Economics – SOAS, University of London

MSc in Economics – University of Campinas (Unicamp, Brazil)

BA in Economics (minor in Social Sciences) – Federal University of Minas Gerais (UFMG, Brazil)


I am primarily a political economist, but at the heart of my work is a commitment to interdisciplinarity and pluralism, with interest ranging wide across the social sciences. My research encompasses different aspects of the political economy of Latin America, focusing on inequality, structural change and a critique of development strategies. In particular, my recent work has assessed how the strategies of the ‘Pink Tide’ governments – the left-of-centre parties that were in power in Latin America roughly during the 2000s – were capable or not of upgrading the structures of their economies, reducing multidimensional inequality, and launching an inclusive, sustainable process of development. This encompasses an assessment, comparison and critique of the development strategies from different vantage points, ranging from their approach to economic transformation to the class politics that sustained and constrained these strategies. Currently, I am also working on how inequality in Brazil is structured in and through class, race and gender, and how this has changed over the past decades. This research also involves an investigation of how the commodification of social reproduction participated in reshaping intersectional inequality. 

One of my other central research interests is the measurement of inequality. From a theoretical and statistical perspective, I am working on decompositions and extensions of (multidimensional) inequality indices, as well as on the relationship between the measurement of inequality and social choice theory. I developed, alongside colleagues from the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) and Oxfam, a Multidimensional Inequality Framework (MIF) based on Amartya Sen’s capabilities approach, which is now being piloted in different countries. I am particularly interested in applications of these frameworks in a comparative perspective.

Another ongoing research project is studying the economy as a complex system. In a collaboration with physicists, economists and philosophers, we have been promoting a dialogue between the physics of complexity and political economy, with two key objectives. The first is to understand and model the economy as a non-linear, complex and adaptive system, stressing the role of technological innovation and the dynamics of the profit rate. The second is to explore the differences between a modern capitalist economy and other complex systems.

I am also interested in heterodox frameworks in economics (Marxist, post-Keynesian, Institutionalist, the Capabilities approach), class analysis, financialisation, state theory, Brazilian economic history, interdisciplinary and pluralist approaches, and mixed methods in the social sciences.

Research interests

  • Structural change, inequality dynamics and state forms in Latin America
  • Political economy of development strategies in Latin America
  • Multi-dimensional inequality measurement and policy solutions
  • Inequality regimes and social reproduction in Latin America
  • The economy as a complex system
  • Pluralist, interdisciplinary and mixed methods approaches in the social sciences
  • Political economy and state theory
  • The capabilities approach
  • Brazilian economic history

PhD Supervision

I am interested in supervising PhD students working, in broad terms, on the political economy of Latin America, particularly in relation to inequality dynamics, development strategies, and state forms. Research projects related to these subjects but not focussed on Latin America are also a possibility.


Duygan, M., Kachi, A., Loureiro, P. M., Olivera, T. D., Rinscheid, A., Stutzer, R. 2021.Black coal, thin ice: the discursive legitimisation of Australian coal in the age of climate change. Humanities and Social Sciences Communications, 8(178), 1-9.

Fine, B., Loureiro, P. M. 2021. From social choice to inequality-decomposition: In the spirit of Arrow and Atkinson by way of Sen and Shorrocks. International Review of Applied Economics,

Loureiro, P. M., Rugitsky, F., Saad-Filho, A. 2021. Celso Furtado and the Myth of Economic Development: Rethinking Development from Exile. Review of Political Economy. 33(1), 28-43 

Loureiro, P. M. 2020. Capital accumulation and class inequality in Brazil, 1992-2013. Cambridge Journal of Economics, 44(1), 181-206

Loureiro, P. M. 2020. Social Structure and Distributive Policies under the PT Governments: A Poverty-Reducing Variety of Neoliberalism. Latin American Perspectives, 47(2), 65–83

Fine, B., Loureiro, P. M. 2020. A note on the relationship between additive separability and decomposability in measuring income inequality. Review of Social Economy, 1-16,

Loureiro, P. M., Saad-Filho, A. 2019. The Limits of Pragmatism: The Rise and Fall of the Brazilian Workers’ Party (2002–2016). Latin American Perspectives, 46(1), 66-84

(A modified version of the article above:) Loureiro, P. M. and Saad-Filho, A., 2019. The Limits of Pragmatism: The Rise and Fall of the Brazilian Workers’ Party (2002–2016). In: Ellner, S. ed. Latin America’s Pink Tide: Breakthroughs and Shortcomings. Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield, 89-112

Loureiro, P. M. 2018. Reformism, class conciliation and the Pink Tide: material gains and their limits. In: Ystanes, M. and Stronen, I. eds. The social life of economic inequalities in contemporary Latin America: decades of change. Cheltenham: Palgrave Macmillan, 35-56

Ribeiro, L. C., de Deus, L. G., Loureiro, P. M., Albuquerque, E. M. 2017. A network model for the complex behavior of the rate of profit: exploring a simulation model with overlapping technological revolutions. Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, 43, 51-61

Ribeiro, L. C., de Deus, L. G., Loureiro, P. M., Albuquerque, E. M. 2017. Profits and fractal properties: notes on Marx, countertendencies and simulation models. Review of Political Economy, 29(2), 282-306

Oliveira, T. D., Golgher, A. B., Loureiro, P. M. 2016. Trajetórias de local de moradia, estudo e trabalho dos jovens brasileiros entre 2003 e 2011: uma análise de entropia. Revista Brasileira de Estudos Populacionais, 33(1), 31-52

Godoy, M. M., Loureiro, P. M. 2010. Os Registros Paroquiais de Terras na história e na historiografia. História Econômica & História de Empresas, Campinas, 13(1), 95-132

Other academic work


In the 2021/2022 academic year, I will be teaching sessions in the following papers:

  • MPhil in Latin American Studies modules
    • Capitalism and Society in Latin America
    • Development and Policy in Latin America
    • Interpretations of Latin America
    • MPhil in Latin American Studies Core Course
  • Development Studies (MPhil)
    • Development Economics
  • POLIS (Undergraduate)
    • POL4E – Comparative Politics – Latin America: Brazil and Bolivia
  • Fitzwilliam College
    • Director of Studies: HSPS tripos, part II
    • POL1 Supervisions
    • POL4 Supervisions
    • POL5/19 Supervisions
    • POL9 Supervisions