Lana Gonzalez Balyk

PhD in Global Governance

Lana Gonzalez Balyk is a Ph.D. candidate (ABD) in Global Governance at the Balsillie School of International Affairs, Waterloo, Ontario. Her broad research interests fall under critical migration and border studies and gender and migration.

Lana’s Ph.D. dissertation is influenced by intersectional feminism and focuses on migrant women’s community building in Portugal. Her research explores the impact of migration governance policies and practices on the lived experiences of migrant women living in Portugal, with the purpose of informing migration governance policies and practices. Furthermore, she aims to illustrate the actions large and small that migrant women take to become active participants in their resettlement in Portugal.

Prior to her studies, Lana engaged in contract work for the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada, held the position of Refugee Case Manager for an Immigration Consultant, and worked as an English as a Second Language Teacher. Prior to this, she worked as a Program Manager for a micro-finance organization in Nicaragua, People Helping People Global (PHPG), and as a research assistant for the Centre for Mediation, Peace and Resolution of Conflict (CEMPROC) in Ecuador.
She previously completed her MA in Human Security and Peace building at Royal Roads University in Victoria, a program concentrated on international development and human rights. Before that, she completed her BA in History at the University of Calgary, where she focused on Latin American History. She attended a field school in Uganda, focusing on refugee studies, and an archeology field school in Mexico.

Lana is fluent in Spanish and speaks intermediate-level Portuguese.


  • Balsillie Fellowship at BSIA through the University of Waterloo 2019-2024
  • Sharon and David Johnson Award Nov 2023
  • Connect 4 Success Research Travel Grant Nov 2023
  • David Johnson International Experience Award May 2023
  • Connect 4 Success Research Travel Grant Nov 2022
  • Sharon and David Johnson Award Nov 2022
  • Briarhurst Travel and Research Award June 2022
  • Ontario Graduate Scholarship (OGS) May 2022
  • President’s Graduate Scholarship May 2022
  • University of Waterloo International Experience Award May 2022
  • David Johnson International Experience Award Jan 2022

Select Publications

  • Ilcan, S., S. Dağtaş, and L. Gonzalez Balyk, 2024. “The Making of Transversal Community- Building: Fostering Women’s Collaboration and Solidarity Across Differences in Paphos, Cyprus.” SSHRC-based Research Report. University of Waterloo. January.
  •  Gonzalez Balyk, L, Ilcan, S & Dağtaş, S. 2023. “Intersection of Gender and Marginalized Identities on Opposite ends of Europe.” Routed Magazine. 23
  • Ilcan, S, Dağtaş, S & Gonzalez Balyk, L. 2023. “Borderland Porosities: Migratory Journeys and Migrant Politics in Lebanon and Turkey.” Journal of Refugee Studies; fead017 (
  • Gonzalez Balyk, L. “Soledad o Solidaridad: Cooperation and Tensions in the Regional State Response to the Venezuelan Migration Crisis.” Studies in Social Justice. 16-3: 612-627.
  • Balyk, L., & Pugh, J. 2013. “Networked governance in Ecuador’s border regions.” Forced Migration Review 43:47-49.


  • MA Human Security and Peacebuilding, Royal Roads University, 2012.
  • BA History, University of Calgary, 2008.
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