Image of Erika López Franco

Erika López Franco

Research Officer

Erika conducts research and advocacy for the meaningful participation of vulnerable groups using a rights-based approach and a power analysis lens. After five years of work in the field of participation, Erika has a particular interest in exploring the meanings and pathways of accountability for the poorest and most marginalised.

This work takes place in the the contexts of increased inequality, resource exploitation, environmental damage, participation fatigue, the growth of ICTs and other digital technologies, and increased decentralisation. She asks what are the drivers, incentives, motivations and avenues that people are finding and creating to hold powerful public, private, formal and informal actors to account?

During her time at IDS, Erika has worked in a number of programmes. Within the Participate initiative she supported network members on methodological design and innovation and the implementation of research processes. She also took part in the meta-synthesis of the findings for a diverse range publications that were generated by the research. As part of the Valuing Volunteering project, she was involved in the learning and reflection process with VSO staff along with providing methodological guidance and support for the field-researchers.

Currently, Erika is the IDS lead of the learning component of the Citizen Engagement Programme (CEP) in Mozambique. Here she has conducted an Action Learning case study on citizenship building for accountability, has advised on the design of a learning system for actors from the district to the national level and also provides support to the programme’s advocacy strategies. Finally, Erika coordinates a research, learning and practice collaboration with Swiss Development Cooperation on Poverty, Politics and Power.



Valuing Volunteering

The project aims to expand our knowledge of the specific attributes of volunteering as a development mechanism and the unique ways in which volunteering impacts on poverty.




Representation and Inclusion in School Councils in Mozambique

This study was conducted as part of the Citizen Engagement Programme (Programa Cidadania e Participação (CEP)) in Mozambique – an empowerment and social accountability initiative to improve the quality of education and health services by increasing citizens’ influence on the management of...

Katia Taela & 2 others

30 May 2018


Participatory Accountability for the SDGs: Beyond Social Accountability

Participate Policy Briefing 4

People who are most marginalised need to participate in the monitoring and accountability of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) if the ‘leave no-one behind’ ambition is to be met. Participatory accountability is necessary for their realities to be understood and for their voices to be...

1 June 2017

Erika López Franco’s recent work

Past Event

Participatory and Inclusive Tools to build capacities in Leaving No One Behind

SDGs Learning, Training and Practice Workshops during HLPF 2019 Bringing the voices and experiences of those who have been left behind – through empowerment and participation – goes beyond enabling agency and towards developing a more inclusive and democratic society. Come to listen to and...

11 July 2019

Past Event

Intersecting inequalities and accountable relationships: Why so much hype?

From late 2016 to early 2018, researchers from the IDS Participation, Inclusion and Social Change team worked with five partners in (Egypt, Ghana, India, South Africa and Uganda) carrying out participatory research to understand how intersecting inequalities are shaping the daily lives of...

12 December 2018