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Politics and International RelationsPart of Economic, Social and Political Science

Dr Rafael Mestre PhD, MSc, BSc

Research Fellow

Dr Rafael Mestre's photo

Rafael Mestre is a Research Fellow on the ‘Rebooting Democracy’ project.

I joined the University of Southampton in January 2021. I possess a multidisciplinary background in Physics, Nanoscience, Tissue Engineering, 3D Bioprinting and Bio-hybrid Robotics. I hold a Bachelor’s Degree by the University of Granada, an Erasmus Mundus Joint Master in Nanoscience and Nanotechnology by KU Leuven and Université Grenoble Alpes and a PhD in Nanoscience by the University of Barcelona.

Prior to joining the University of Southampton, I worked in a wide scope of projects as an intern at Deutsches Elektronen-Synchrotron (DESY) in Berlin and CEA Leti in Grenoble, as a predoctoral researcher at the Institute for Bioengineering of Catalonia (IBEC) in Barcelona, and as a visiting researcher at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC). My PhD research was focused on the development of bio-hybrid systems by combining advances from the fields of bioengineering, material science, physics and nanotechnology, with a focus on theoretical modelling and validation, and analytical characterization. My work has been published in multidisciplinary journals and I have presented in international conferences. I have a strong commitment to science dissemination, and I have participated in outreach activities for all kinds of audiences in different formats.

I employ analytical and programming skills to solve complex inter-disciplinary problems with an open-minded and collaborative approach. On the ‘Rebooting Democracy’ project, I work on argumentation mining to try and figure out how people debate and feel about certain political issues through natural language processing, bridging fields like computer science, political science and argumentation.

Previous Employment:

Predoctoral researcher – Institute for Bioengineering of Catalonia (IBEC) – Barcelona (2016 – 2021)

Academic Qualifications:

PhD in Nanoscience – University of Barcelona (UB) – 2020

Erasmus Mundus Joint Master Degree in Nanoscience and Nanotechnology – KU Leuven and Université Grenoble Alpes – 2016

BSc in Physics – University of Granada (UGR) – 2014

Research interests

My research interests are in data science and artificial intelligence for the social good.

Despite my background in the physical and life sciences, on a more personal level, I am highly interested in the humanities, particularly linguistics, ethics and philosophy.

My current research efforts are focused on natural language processing, argumentation and democratic innovations.

Research Projects

I am a Research Fellow on the UKRI-funded ‘Rebooting Democracy’ project led by Dr. Matthew Ryan.

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Dr Rafael Mestre
Politics & International Relations, Social Sciences, University of Southampton, Southampton SO17 1BJ United Kingdom

Room Number : 58/3005

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