About the Team


Sylvanna M. Falcón, Founder and Director

Associate Professor, Latin American and Latino Studies
Director, Dolores Huerta Research Center for the Americas

Professor Falcón is an award-winning author of Power Interrupted: Antiracist and Feminist Activists inside the United Nations (University of Washington Press, 2016 - awarded the 2016 National Women's Studies Association Gloria E. Anzaldúa Book Prize). She is the co-editor of Precarity and Belonging: Labor, Migration, and Noncitizenship [Rutgers University Press, 2021] and New Directions in Feminism and Human Rights [Routledge, 2011]. Over 2016-17, she was a co-principal investigator of Non-citizenship, UC Santa Cruz's Mellon-funded Sawyer Seminar on migration and mobility, belonging, and rights. Her research and teaching interests are in human rights, transnational and decolonial feminism, racism and antiracism, open source investigations, and transitional justice in Peru. She is a former United Nations consultant to the UN Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women and has published in numerous peer-review journal articles.


Sophie Lilinoe Grewell, Lab Assistant and Coordinator

Sophie Lilinoe Grewell, an alum of the Human Rights Investigations Lab at UC Santa Cruz, graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Feminist Studies and Critical Race & Ethnic Studies. At the Lab, Sophie worked with student teams to conduct investigations on numerous human rights crises in the Americas, including the murders of Indigenous leaders in Latin America, the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls (MMIWG) crisis in Northern California, and the spread of political misinformation on social media platforms in multiple languages. As a human rights researcher with experience investigating crises on a local and international level, she is skilled in ArcGIS, geolocation, and digital data collection. 


Saskia Nauenberg Dunkell, Lab Advisor
Research Program Manager at The Humanities Institute

Dr. Nauenberg Dunkell is a humanistic social scientist with research specializations in transitional justice, global and transnational sociology, and peace negotiations in Colombia. Before moving to UC Santa Cruz, she was an inaugural research affiliate at the Promise Institute for Human Rights at UCLA School of Law and National Science Foundation fellow at the Center for Conflict, Displacement, and Peacebuilding at the University of Cartagena, Colombia. Alongside her scholarship, she has led Global Youth Connect’s Colombia Human Rights Delegation, worked at the International Peace and Security Institute’s The Hague Symposium on Post-Conflict Transitions and International Justice, and served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in the Kingdom of Tonga. She received her Ph.D. in Sociology at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) in 2018.

The Lab trains students on how to use the internet as a critical tool for fact finding and evidence gathering for human rights violations and to promote social justice. Student researchers reflect a wide range of fields and disciplines including, but not limited to, Latin American and Latino Studies, Environmental Studies, Film and Digital Media, Politics, Philosophy, Feminist Studies, Critical Race and Ethnic Studies, Psychology, Biology, Mathematics, Spanish Studies, and Legal Studies.

When funding permits, we also sponsor Graduate Student Researchers. These graduate students have been from Anthropology, Latin American and Latino Studies, Feminist Studies, and Film & Digital Media.