School of Social and Political Science

Clara Mascaró

Job Title

PhD student, Social Policy

Research interests



I am a comparative researcher in Social Policy with interests in work and employment, welfare states, social inequality and research methods, particularly in relation to health and disability.

My PhD thesis focuses on labour market inclusion and social security for working-age disabled people in the United Kingdom and Germany. Combining the social-relational model of disability and insights from social stratification and comparative welfare state studies, I am interested in how labour market cleavages and the institutional construction of unemployment and/or disability apply to working-age disabled people across these two very different contexts. In order to tackle this question empirically, I conduct longitudinal analyses of the UK Household Longitudinal Survey (Understanding Society) and the German Socio-Economic Panel.

I have tutored on undergraduate courses in European Social Policy and quantitative methods, and I am accredited as an Associate Fellow of the British Higher Education Academy.

Prior to my postgraduate studies, I worked as a Research Consultant, mainly on evaluations of employment policy and health and social care policy.

PhD thesis

Working title: Inequalities in employment retention and social security for working-age disabled people in Germany and the United Kingdom, 2010-2019.

Funded by the United Kingdom’s Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC).

Supervised by:


MSc by Research in Social Policy (with Distinction), University of Edinburgh (2018)

MA (Hons) Economics and Politics (First Class), University of Edinburgh (2015)

Research experience

Research Assistant in a project with Dr Niccolo Durazzi (Social Policy), analysing the political economy of active labour market policies in a comparative perspective (2019-2021).

Research Consultant, working mainly on evaluations of employment policy and health and social care policy (2015-2017).


Clasen and Mascaro (2022), “Activation: a thematic and conceptual review”. Journal of European Social Policy, Vol. 32 (4).

Academic Presentations

“Partisanship, Corporatism and Active Labour Market Policy” (with Niccolo Durazzi). Society for the Advancement of Socio-economics (SASE) Meeting. 5th July 2021.

“Discapacidad, estratificación social y retención laboral: el caso del Reino Unido 2009-2019”. REPS 2021, VIII Congreso Red Española de Política Social, Mesa 13.1 Discapacidad, capacitismo y políticas sociales. 16th March 2021.

“The Moral Economy of Incapacity Benefits: A critical assessment of normative developments in Germany and the United Kingdom”. Paper presented jointly with Larissa Nenning at the Espanet 2020 PhD Seminar, "Labour market participation of persons with disabilities – policies and practices". 3rd September, 2020.

“Analysing and critiquing norms of work, workers and working lives in the welfare state: the example of disability benefits in the UK and Germany”. Paper presented jointly with Larissa Nenning at the Interdisciplinary Summit “Challenging the Work Society” organised by the think-tank Autonomy. London, 27th September, 2019.

“Transitions between employment and incapacity to work in a European, comparative perspective: the roles of non-standard employment and labour market policies”. Paper presented at the III PROMEBI Summer School, University of Oviedo. 4th September 2018.


Undergraduate tutoring:

  • European Social Policy (2018/19 and 2019/20)
  • Introduction to Statistics for Social Science (2019/20)


  • Work, Economy and Welfare Research Group at the University of Edinburgh.
  • Member of the UK-wide PhD and early career researcher network Money, Security and Social Policy (MSSP).
  • Member of the British Social Policy Association (SPA)
  • Associate Fellow of the British Higher Education Academy

Scholarships and Awards

  • ESRC +3.3 Doctoral Scholarship (2018-2024 part-time)
  • Prize for Best Performance in MSc by Research, School of Social and Political Science, University of Edinburgh (Nov 2018)

Works within