Core Team

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Max Nathanson

Co-founder and co-President

Max is an MPhil student in Oxford's Department of International Development, a research fellow at the China-Latin America Sustainable Investment Initiative at the Bank Information Center, and a research assistant in the Blavatnik School of Government and the Saïd Business School. In 2017 he was named a Global Shaper by the World Economic Forum. His research interests involve the politics of sustainable development, environmental governance, and infrastructure and energy systems, with a focus on Chinese finance to Latin America. His writing has been published by the Thomson Reuters Foundation, Mongabay, El Comercio, China Dialogue, Wild, and other international outlets. Prior to Oxford, he held research positions at FoodTank, a Colorado state political campaign, and in the office of the Lieutenant Governor of Colorado. He received a bachelor's degree in Political Science, summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa, from the University of Colorado, where he was a Norlin Scholar. Personal interests include bikes, mountains, dogs, and skis.


Gus greenstein

co-president and publications Director

Gus is a Development Studies MPhil student at Oxford, where his research focuses on the evolution of development finance institutions and their social-environmental regulations. His primary Urbanist interests lie in the social-environmental sustainability of large infrastructure projects, with a concentration in Southeast Asia and Latin America. Prior to Oxford, he worked as an energy economics research analyst at the The Brattle Group and, as a Thomas J. Watson Fellow, spent a year documenting the impacts of large hydropower projects across India, Southeast Asia, Southern Africa, and Mexico. He continues to widen his horizons through freelance environmental journalism projects. He holds a bachelor's degree in Environmental Studies from Amherst College.



Editorial coordinator

Anna Isabelle 'Sai' Villafuerte is currently reading for an MPhil in Development Studies at the University of Oxford. Her research broadly focuses on the relationship between institutional innovation and human capital development in East and Southeast Asia. More specifically, she is exploring the role of digital technologies in the development of creative industries in the Philippines. With regards to urbanism, she is interested in the cultural economy of cities and how it can enable the development of creative skills. 

Prior to Oxford, Sai earned her bachelor’s degree in International Politics at City, University of London where she wrote her thesis on the rise of private housing bonds in the Philippines. In 2015, she worked in Unicef UK alongside the Head of Emergencies, drafting advocacy plans on the UN's Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Beyond her studies, she writes for The Huffington Post and has published pieces on topics relating to arts, politics and wherever they intersect.


zoë Johnson

Organisational development coordinator and South asia Coordinator

Zoë Johnson is an MPhil student at Oxford’s Department of International Development. She is interested studying the complex networks and socio-spatial interactions that constitute urbanity. Her current research interests are based on a curiosity about the ways that contemporary urbanisation and urban development are reproducing and reinforcing social inequalities. In her research, she hopes to take a critical approach to mainstream urban theory, calling into question discourses that are rooted predominantly in urban experiences of the Global North. Within this hierarchical framework, the “developed” world misses out on valuable opportunities to learn from urbanity in the Global South.

Before coming to Oxford, Zoë worked as the Program Coordinator for UBC’s Himalaya Program and as an editorial assistant. Zoë holds a BSc in Global Resource Systems from the University of British Columbia. In this program, she studied globalisation, urbanisation, and international development through the lens of food systems and food sovereignty movements, with a regional focus on South Asia.


Antje Lang

Organisational Development Coordinator

Antje Lang is an MSc student in Environmental Change and Management at Oxford’s School of Geography and the Environment. At SoGE and as an Urbanist, she is looking forward to delving deeper into the opportunities and challenges of cities as centres of sustainability and shapers of climate, and integrating this with her passion for environmental justice.

Prior to Oxford, Antje worked as the outreach and policy coordinator at the Lawyers’ Committee for Better Housing, a Chicago-based legal aid and affordable housing non-profit, and focused on passing legislation to integrate environmental health and affordable housing. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Environmental Science and Policy from Duke University, where she focused on environmental health. Beyond her academic proclivities, you will probably find her rock-climbing, playing music, or watching PBS documentaries.   


Yulia Lisovskaya

Vice President and Russia/Eastern Europe Coordinator

Yulia Lisovskaya is MSc student in Environmental Change and Management at the School of Geography and the Environment. She grew up in Russia and moved to the United States to pursue her bachelor’s degrees in Applied Economics and Geography. As a young scholar in the field of urban planning Yulia was drawn to the plethora of challenges faced by human settlements, ranging from the transit deserts in her local West Michigan to the exigent climate change-induced phenomenon of sea level rise in the global coastal communities. Within the professional realm, she worked for a number of non-profit and governmental organisations, including the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat), Chicago Transit Authority and Centre for Neighbourhood Technology.

Yulia is thrilled for her academic journey with ECM and looks forward to becoming an even more effective change-maker in the field of sustainable development. Her specific academic and professional interests lie within the environmental hazard mitigation and sustainability education fields. In her spare time, Yulia loves to ballroom dance, sing and travel.


Luciano Mateo Rodriguez Carrington

Latin America Coordinator

Luciano is an MPhil student in Development Studies student at the Oxford Department of International Development (ODID). He is currently studying the interplay between global climate change mitigation strategies and the local impacts of development projects aimed at poverty reduction, with a specific focus on Mexico. His interests involve issues of: sustainable development, rural-to-urban migration, multiculturalism, climate change and social policy. Before coming to Oxford, Luciano completed a bachelor’s degree in Social & Political Sciences at Goldsmiths, University of London. He also worked as a research assistant on a conservation and development project with Natura y Ecosistemas Mexicanos A.C. and as a research assistant at Human Rights Watch, London, working on issues of migration in Europe. He continues to direct his efforts on building bridges between academic research and development projects.