Dr Cristina Penasco

University Associate Professor in Public Policy at Department of Politics and International Studies (POLIS), University of Cambridge


Dr Cristina Peñasco is a University Assistant Professor in Public Policy at POLIS. At Cambridge she is also a Fellow at Queens' College, a Centre Fellow at Centre for the Environment, Energy and Natural Resource Governance (C-EENRG) hosted at the Department of Land Economy, and an associate researcher of the Bennett Institute for Public Policy. She holds a PhD in Economics from the Spanish National Research Council and the University Rey Juan Carlos and an MPhil in Research in Economics and Business from ICADE Business School in Spain. Prior to joining POLIS in September 2019, she was an Assistant Professor in Applied Economics in the University of Alcalá (Spain) and a Postdoctoral Research Associate in the Department of Land Economy at the University of Cambridge (UK).

Previously, she conducted multidisciplinary research in several organisations. She was a Postdoctoral Researcher and a Junior Researcher, in conjunction with a competitive PhD scholarship, in the Institute of Public Goods and Policies (IPP) of the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC), the largest public research institution in Spain. In 2014, she was visiting researcher at the Energy Economics Group (EEG) of the Institute of Energy Systems and Electrical Drives at the Vienna University of Technology (TU WIEN).

Her research lines bring together multidisciplinary research in environmental economics, innovation policy and energy economics in green and energy efficiency technologies, with a focus on the policy instruments enabling the transition to low-carbon economies. She has a strong background on statistical and quantitative methods of analysis and econometric techniques that has served her to publish several articles in world-class journals such as Technological and Economic Development of the Economy, Energy Policy or Business Strategy and the Environment, among others.

She has participated in several European-funded projects on renewable energy support schemes in the EU as well as in a range of Spanish funded projects. As part of her current research activity, she is working on the project called Innovation Pathways for a Low-carbon Transition (INNOPATHS), directed by Professor Laura Diaz Anadon and funded in the EC’s Horizon2020 framework. For that project, she is designing an online Policy Evaluation Tool intended to be a helpful reference for policy makers and academics as it allows them to foresee possible trade-offs and co-benefits in environmental policy.

She is the Evaluation leader of the Economics of Energy Innovation and Systems Transition (EEIST) project funded by BEIS (UK Government).

  • In news articles

    Net zero

    The final panel session of the Centre for Science and Policy’s (CSaP) annual reception 2021 discussed net zero ambitions. It was chaired by Dr Rob Doubleday, the Centre’s Executive Director with panellists; Dr Christina Peñasco, Lecturer in Public Policy, Cambridge and Dr Matthew Agarwala, Economist at the Bennett Institute for Public Policy, Cambridge.