Grad Students

Nicole Iturriaga

Contact Information

Office  Haines 109

Please see my website:

My dissertation, "Digging for the Disappeared: Forensics, DNA, and Rewriting Spain's Violent History,is a global and multi-sited ethnography of the transnational forensics-based human rights social movement. Broadly it asks, how are human rights activists using forensics and DNA testing to reframe histories of violence? How are they using transnational advocacy networks and expertise to further their goals of restoring identity, memory, and justice within a globalized context? To answer these questions, I completed a historical analysis of secondary historical literature of the movement—beginning in post-conflict Argentina—and an ethnographic case study of the Spanish Association for the Recovery of Historical Memory (ARMH). I also conducted two months of interviews and observations in Argentina in 2015 and 14 months of participant observation with the ARMH in 2015-2017. In all, I conducted 230 interviews with activist and non-activist Spaniards. 

This dissertation research is part of my broader research agenda in sociology, which focuses on social movements, politics, collective memory, human rights, culture, the role of gender, and the politics of reproduction. 


Fields of Study

Social Movements, Political Violence and State Terror, Collective Memory, Gender, Human Rights, Science and Technology, Culture, and the Politics of Reproduction. 


 CV available on my website

Grants and Awards


Peter Kollock Graduate Student Teaching Assistant Award, 2015

Department of Sociology UCLA Excellence in Teaching, 2015- 2016

Department of Sociology UCLA Excellence in Teaching, 2013- 2014

Department of Sociology UCLA Excellence in Teaching, 2012- 2013

Department of Sociology UCLA Excellence in Teaching, 2011-2012



UCLA Dissertation Year Fellowship, 2017-2018

The Russian & Eurasian Studies Endowed Award, 2016

UCLA Latin American Institute Summer Dissertation Research Fellowship, 2014

Department of Sociology Summer Fellowship 2014

Del Almo Spanish Cultures Summer Fellowship 2013

Graduate Research Summer Mentorship, 2012

Graduate Research Summer Mentorship, 2011

UCLA Sociology Department Graduate Fellowship, 2010-2015

Glaser Education Foundation Academic Scholarship, 2009


Professor Gail Kligman (Co-Chair), Professor Abigail Saguy (Co-Chair), Professor Hannah Landecker, Professor Geoff Robinson 


C. Phil, UCLA, 2014

M.A. Sociology, UCLA, 2010

B.A. Sociology (with highest honors), University of California Berkeley