University of Calgary

Gabriela Alonso Yanez

  • Assistant Professor

Currently Teaching


Dr. Alonso-Yanez completed her doctorate in Curriculum Theory and Implementation in the Faculty of Education at Simon Fraser University. Previous to beginning her doctoral studies in Canada, Dr. Alonso was Assistant Professor at the University of Morelos in Mexico where she taught and conducted research in the Faculty of Science and the Faculty of Psychology.

Research & Scholarly Activity

Learning and education in the context of sustainability and global change are the focus of my work. Specifically, my research focuses on understanding the factors and conditions that influence how teams produce integrated, action-oriented socioecological knowledge in a rapidly changing world. I currently teach undergraduate and graduate courses in design thinking and project-based learning, interdisciplinary research, and formative assessment. Over the last 10 years, I have participated in several collaborative research projects with multiple aims, including: to build researchers’ and organizations’ capacity for collaboration; to engage stakeholders in co-designing and co-producing solutions-oriented knowledge; and to aid teams to develop networks of mutual learning.

Current Projects:

  • Teamwork for Effective Research Action in the Americas (Inter-American Institute for Global Change Research - Seed Grant).
  • 2016-2017 - Pathways for Convergence and Cross-Sector Collaboration. This project focuses specifically on the role of grey literature in processes of knowledge integration and mutual learning in interdisciplinary collaborations and includes research partners from Canada, Uruguay, and Chile. 
  • 2015-2017 - Applying Social Network Analysis Techniques to Team-based Concept Study and STEM Professional Learning. This Research Collaboration Grant enables a team of researchers from Werklund and Mexico’s- Universidad Pedagógica Nacional (UPN), to apply Social Network Analysis techniques to study collaboration and interactions within team-based concept study and STEM professional learning.


PhD Curriculum Theory and Implementation
Simon Fraser University

MEd Environmental Education
Instituto de Investigaciones Ecologicas, Malaga, Spain

BSc Psychlogy (Honours)
Universidad Autonoma del Estado de Morelos

Professional & Community Affiliations

Over the years, Dr. Alonso has been involved with a number of different organizations that work on sustainable development and education in Latin America, such as the Institute for Tropical Ecology and Conservation for whom Gabriela recently completed a project funded by the Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund. More recently, her research has been funded by the Inter-American Institute for Global Change Research (IAI) which focuses on improving the dynamics of scientific research teams to effectively produce science for policy.


Alonso-Yanez, G., Brown, B., Friesen, S. & Jacobsen, Michele. (2016). Innovative Methods to Study School System Dynamics. In M. Takeuchi, A.P. Preciado Babb, & J. Lock. IDEAS 2016: Designing for Innovation Selected Proceedings. Paper presented at IDEAS 2016: Designing for Innovation, Calgary, Canada (pg. 12-21). Calgary, Canada: Werklund School of Education, University of Calgary.

Alonso-Yanez, G. Thumlert, K & de Castell S. (2016). Re-mapping Integrative Conservation: (Dis)Coordinate Participation in a Biosphere Reserve in Mexico. Conservation and Society, 14(2), 13-20.

Alonso-Yanez, G. & Davidsen, C. (2014). Conservation science policies versus scientific practice: Evidence from a Mexican biosphere reserve. Human Ecology Review, 20 (2), 3-29.

Alonso-Yanez, G. & Dhakal, S. P. (2009). Community partnership for ecotourism based on an environmental education program for sustainable development in Sierra de Huautla, México. Utopía y Praxis Latinoamericana, 14 (44), 117-124.


2016- 2017 Professional Development Seminar (PDS) on Transdisciplinary Approaches to Integrating Policy and Science for Sustainability.

2016- Innovation Exchange - 

Dorado, O. & Alonso-Yanez, G. (2004, 2011). Loteria de la Selva Baja (education resource).

Alonso-Yanez, G., Mata, A. & Arias, D. (2004, 2006). Dry forest (education resource).

Alonso, G. (2006). Our stories: Lessons learned. Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund.


  • 2014 | Research Grant | Inter-American Institute for Global Change Research | Knowledge and action systems: Capacity building to transform knowledge production into effective action under conditions of uncertainty in the Americas
  • 2006 | Capacity Building Grant | Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund | Promoting environmental education in Southern Mesoamerica Hotspot (Archipiélago Bocas del Toro) | 
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