Field of expertise

Financial Geography; Economic Geography; Urban Geography

Main research topics

Pension funds; financial industry, institutional investors; commercial property market, financialization

Languages

Portuguese; English; Spanish; French

Contact information

mairamagnani@uol.com.br

About me

I am a Ph.D. candidate in Sciences Humaines et Sociologie at the University of Neuchâtel (Switzerland) and in Geography at the Universidade Federal Fluminense (Brazil) (co-tutelle scheme). My research expertise is in economic and financial geography. My research interests include geographies of money and finance, pension funds, asset managers, and property markets. I hold a Master's in Geography (2021) from the Universidade Federal Fluminense (UFF) and two Bachelor’s degrees in Sciences and Humanities (2017) and Public Policy (2018) from the Universidade Federal do ABC (UFABC).

Currently, I am researching the role played by asset managers in controlling money flows by pooling, managing, and channeling money in the real economy. I focus on the qualitative aspects that shape these flows of money. Moreover, I take part in a research project on the performance of financial and corporate investors in the Brazilian commercial real estate market. In this project, my team and I shed light on the heterogeneity of financial actors that invest in the commercial real estate market.

My recent research publications include papers published/forthcoming in Economic Geography, Environment and Planning A, Finance & Space, and Area Development and Policy.

Education

PhD in Human and Social Sciences
University of Neuchâtel, Switzerland
PhD in Geography
Universidade Federal Fluminense, Brazil
Joint supervision

Supervisors: Prof. Olivier Crevoisier (University of Neuchâtel) and Prof. Daniel Sanfelici (Universidade Federal Fluminense)

M.A. in Geography
Universidade Federal Fluminense, Brazil
Supervisor: Prof. Daniel Sanfelici
APPROVED WITH DISTINCTION AND NOMINATED FOR AWARDS

Bachelor in Public Policies
Federal University of ABC, Brazil
ACHIEVEMENT COEFFICIENT: 3.5 (max. 4.0)

Bachelor in Science and Humanities
Federal University of ABC, Brazil
ACHIEVEMENT COEFFICIENT: 3.5 (max. 4.0)

Employment history

Professor assistant
Disciplines: Agrobusiness, Data Science for Business, Digital Marketing, Healthcare Business, Compliance and Integrity in Business
Link School of Business, Brazil

PhD candidate
Group of Research in Territorial Economy, Institute of Sociology,
University of Neuchâtel, Switzerland

PhD candidate
Department of Geography, Universidade Federal Fluminense

Committee member
Network on Financial Geography, FINGEO

Teaching assistant
Discipline: Economic Geography
Department of Geography, Universidade Federal Fluminense

Research collaborator
Institute of Sociology, University of Neuchâtel

Editorial assistant
Revista Geographia, Brazil

Technical researcher
FAPESP, University of São Paulo, Institute of Architecture and Urbanism

Teaching assistant
Discipline: Supervised practice 1
Department of Geography, Universidade Federal Fluminense

Master’s student
Department of Geography, Universidade Federal Fluminense, Brazil

Technical Advisor
Management Department of São Paulo City Hall, Brazil

Undergraduate researcher
Federal University of ABC, Brazil

Current research projects

Institutional investors and financial intermediaries in the commercial real estate market: an analytical typology of investment practices and their territorial impacts.

Co-development and PhD member under the direction of Prof. Daniel Sanfelici
Funding: FAPERJ (2020 – 2025)

Over the last decade, a growing body of urban studies research has been devoted to understanding the investment practices of large institutional and financial investors (institutional landlords) in the commercial real estate market.

The literature generally points to the prominence of financial rationalities in the decision making of these actors – as opposed to the practices of more traditional real estate investors and entrepreneurs) – and analyzes how these decisions have affected the urban built environment. However, the literature often assumes that all large financial investors largely converge with such financialized investment practices.

The aim of this research is to scrutinize more closely the decision-making rationalities and investment practices of three groups of economic actors that, over the last two decades, have gained greater participation in the Brazilian commercial real estate market: listed property firms; real estate investment funds (FIIs); and pension funds.

The research is based on the hypothesis that, although financial market rationalities are present in the three groups of economic players, relevant differences in decision-making persist and have an impact on the type of investment made, on how it is conducted and, consequently, on the effects of the investment on urban and regional planning.

It is understood, therefore, that shedding light on such differences in investment practices is revealing both to enrich the literature in the field of urban studies on the presence of large institutional investors in the real estate market, still very much confined to developed countries, and may also provide subsidies for the better regulation of urban land use and for the mitigation of socio-spatial disparities in metropolises.

The new value of urban territories: the competing roles of local authorities, public property appraisers and property consultants.

Technical researcher (May – Sep, 2022) / Volunteer student (current) under the supervision of Prof. Lúcia Shimbo
Funding: Cooperation Agreements / UdL - Université de Lyon / UdL - Research Project - Regular - Call for Proposals (2020). Proc. Fapesp 2020/06243-6

This research is based on the theoretically informed observation of the "double colonization by numbers" experienced by organizations during the last century: first, it was the accounting one, and then came the financial valuations.

To apply this analytical matrix to urban contexts, our main objective is to analyze the instrumentation that organises and regulates the relationship between public and private real estate valuation bodies (public land appraisers, city halls and real estate consultants), as well as the urban materialities (buildings and cities) resulting from the adoption of these financial valuations.

In addition to identifying the valuation practices and instruments used to set real estate asset prices, we seek to identify how local authorities plan, implement and sell their urban development programmes, especially related to land attractiveness, to financial investors.

We adopt a qualitative research approach, using three fundamental methodological strategies in a multiscale international comparison perspective (Brazil and France / Lyon and Ribeirão Preto): field research in real estate consulting firms and local authorities; documental research on the programs and legislations related to real estate valuation and planning of metropolitan regions and analysis of secondary databases on the real estate market and demographic censuses.

The scientific relevance of this research lies in the development of a critical perspective on the practices and instruments of the agents who plan, manage and produce the urban space. This perspective allows us to understand the contradictions and resistances of the frontiers of finance in the construction of cities and, at the same time, to reflect on urban public policies. In this sense, this research also aims to contribute to the debate on urban policies by analyzing the role of metropolitan institutions dedicated to local development (as is the case of Lyon) in the face of international urban financialization.

National Observatory on Monitoring and Evaluation of Real Estate and Land Dynamics

PhD member under the direction of Prof. Daniel Sanfelici
Funding: CNPq (2023 – 2025)

The project aims to structure a network of researchers, based on a critical view of urban space production processes, with the creation of the National Observatory for Monitoring and Evaluation of Real Estate and Land Dynamics.

The aim is to fill the gap identified in most research in the area, restricted to case studies, centered on cities in metropolitan areas and delimited by only one dimension of processes, agents, forms or scales. The particularities of each city will be valued, articulating them to the broad understanding of contemporary transformations of Brazilian cities, in various socio-spatial formations, positioned in different levels of the urban network and in different Brazilian macro-regions, allowing comparisons.

The team comes from several universities to bring together accumulated experiences in relation to themes, cities, databases and methodological procedures. The project structures its work around the identification, selection, systematization and availability of data (graphic and cartographic) that allow the understanding of real estate and land dynamics, as well as academic analysis and dissemination to wider audiences, with whom it will seek articulations.

The delimitation into specific sub-themes will be based on the expertise of the network members and include, among others: agents and real estate production (flows and assets); real estate offers (prices, quantities, typologies, locations); control and management of real estate properties; housing policies: volumes, conditions and direction of credit and real estate financing; financialization processes of real estate: different investment funds and financialized evaluation instruments of real estate and the city, among others. The data sources, their appropriation, organization and dissemination and the cities to be researched are those with which the researchers already work and others to be added in the research trajectory.

Prizes, awards, fellowships and scholarships

EPA: Economy and Space (SAGE) Travel Grant – Global Conference on Economic Geography (Dublin, 2022). ($1000)

Virtual Conference Access Award, Urban Specialty Group, American Association of Geographers. ($150)

Latin America Program Graduate Student Fellowship Support, Lincoln Institute of Land Policy. ($5000)

PhD Research Scholarship, CAPES Foundation

Master’s Research Scholarship “FAPERJ Nota 10”, FAPERJ – Fundação Carlos Chagas Filho de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado do Rio de Janeiro.

Master’s Research Scholarship, CAPES Foundation

Undergraduate’s Research Scholarship, CNPq Foundation

Extracurricular activities

11th Summer Institute in Economic Geography in Singapore. (University of Singapore)
Fully funded by Department of Geography at NUS, Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography, Economic Geography (Clark University) and EPA: Economy & Space (Sage)

Winter School on Advanced Qualitative Methodology and Theorizing in Economic Geography (University of Bern, Switzerland)

Summer School “Green futures: Valuing environments during transitional times” (Lyon, France)

2nd FINGEO Summer School (MIT, Massachusetts)

Urban Austerity: A(n urban) political-economic perspective from the North (UFF, Brazil)

Publications

Research articles

Magnani, M.; Sanfelici, D.; Adisson, F.; Halbert, L. (forthcoming). Assetizing Brazilian logistics: power, spaces and scales under asset management capitalism. Finance & Space.

Sanfelici, D.; & Magnani, M. (2023). Unpacking corporate ownership in property markets: A typology of investors and the making of an investment value chain in Brazil. Environment and Planning A: Economy and Space, 0(0). https://doi.org/10.1177/0308518X231157742

Magnani, M.; Sanfelici, D. (2023) The financial industry sets sights on institutional investors: a relational approach to property investment outsourcing. Economic Geography. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/00130095.2022.2149487

Magnani, M. (2023) Os fundos de pensão como objeto de estudo da geografia econômica: diferentes enfoques e agendas de pesquisa [Pension funds as subject of study in economic geography: different approaches and research agendas]. Espaço e Economia [Online], 24 | 2022. DOI: https://doi.org/10.4000/espacoeconomia.22196

Magnani, M.; & Sanfelici, D. (2022) O e-commerce e os fundos imobiliários logísticos: estratégias de captura de rendas imobiliárias [E-commerce and logistics real estate trusts: strategies in capturing real estate rents.] Cadernos Metrópole, v. 24, nº 53. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/2236-9996.2022-5307

Sanfelici, D.; & Magnani, M. (2022) Pension fund investment in commercial real estate: a qualitative analysis of decision-making and investment practices in Brazil. Area Development and Policy. https://doi.org/10.1080/23792949.2021.1943472

Magnani, M.; Sanfelici, D.; Muniz Filho, G. A. (2021) Os investimentos dos fundos de pensão brasileiros no mercado imobiliário comercial: uma análise do portfólio imobiliário e seu padrão territorial. [Brazilian pension funds' investments in the commercial real estate market: an analysis of the real estate portfolio and its territorial pattern]. Revista Brasileira de Estudos Urbanos e Regionais, v. 23. https://doi.org/10.22296/2317-1529.rbeur.202114

Magnani, M.; Jardim, M; & Silva, J. (2020) Os fundos de pensão como agentes do capital: estado da arte da literatura recente [Pension funds as a capital agent: state of the art in recent literature]. Revista Brasileira de Informações Bibliográficas em Ciências Sociais - BIB, v. 93, p 1-22. http://doi.org/10.17666/bib9302/2020 (not found) https://bibanpocs.emnuvens.com.br/revista/article/view/510

Asencio, M. (2019) Os fundos de pensão como agentes da produção do espaço: um olhar a partir da literatura internacional [Pension funds as agents of space production: a look into international literature]. Espaço e Economia, v. 7, p. 1-15. https://doi.org/10.4000/espacoeconomia.6004. Available in: https://journals.openedition.org/espacoeconomia/6004

Contributions to books

Sanfelici, D.; Magnani, M. (2021) Inversores financieros y corporativos en el mercado inmobiliario comercial brasileño: una tipología para el análisis [Financial and corporate investors in the Brazilian commercial real estate market: a typology for analysis]. In: Zamora, José Gasca & Martínez, Patrícia Oliveira. La Ciudad en la era de la financiarización. México: Editora UNAM, pp. 157-179.

Contributions to conferences selected

Magnani, M. The Financial Industry Sets Sights on Institutional Investors: A Relational Approach to Property Investment Outsourcing. Regional Science revisited: (Sustainable) pathways of financialization of the Built Environment (Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Germany) (invited talk)

Magnani, M. The Financial Industry Sets Sights on Institutional Investors: A Relational Approach to Property Investment Outsourcing. Coloque de Recherce de l’Institute de Sociologie (University of Neuchâtel, Switzerland) (invited talk)

Magnani, M. A typology of actors and their investment practices in Brazil's commercial real estate market: contextualizing market behavior. Summer School “Green futures: Valuing environments during transitional times” (Lyon, France) (invited talk)

Magnani, M. Pension fund investment in commercial real estate: a qualitative analysis of decision-making and investment practices in Brazil. Annual Meeting of the American Association of Geographers

Magnani, M.; Sanfelici, D. Pension Fund Investment in Commercial Real Estate: a Qualitative Analysis of Decision-making and Investment Practices in Brazil. Regions in Recovery.

Sanfelici, D.; Magnani, M. Financial investors in Brazil's commercial property markets: a comparative analysis of REITs, pension funds, and listed property companies. Annual Meeting of the American Association of Geographers

Magnani, M. Real estate investment trusts channeling pension funds property investment: the financialization of pension funds portfolio management and its impacts on the Brazilian cities. Annual Meeting of the American Association of Geographers.

Magnani, M. Inversores financieros y corporativos en el mercado inmobiliario comercial brasileño: una tipología para el análisis. [Financial and institutional investors in the Brazilian commercial real estate market: a typology for analysis] Seminário Internacional La Ciudad en la era de la financeirización: hacia una Geografía de la urbanización desde las inversiones inmobiliarias. Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Instituto de Investigaciones Económicas, Facultad de Filosofía y Letras-Seminario de Estudios Urbanos Críticos Programa Universitario de Estudios Sobre la Ciudad. (Invited talk)

Magnani, M. O papel ativo desempenhando pelos fundos de investimento imobiliário na canalização dos investimentos dos fundos de pensão brasileiros . [The active role played by real estate investment trusts in channelling the investments of Brazilian pension funds]. Seminário Internacional Fondos Imobiliarios y Financeirización en América Latina. Instituto de Estudios de América Latina y el Caribe (IEALC) - Faculdad de Ciencias Sociales, Universidad de Buenos Aires, Argentina. (Invited talk)

Sanfelici, D.; Magnani, M. O e-commerce e os fundos imobiliários logísticos: estratégias de captura de rendas imobiliárias [E-commerce and logistics real estate trusts: strategies in capturing real estate rents.] Seminário Internacional Fondos Imobiliarios y Financeirización en América Latina. Instituto de Estudios de América Latina y el Caribe (IEALC) - Faculdad de Ciencias Sociales, Universidad de Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Magnani, M. Pension funds as agents of space production in Brazilian cities: an analysis through its performance in the commercial real estate market. 6th FINGEO Global Seminar. São Paulo, Brazil.

Sanfelici, D.; Magnani, M. Pension Fund Investment in Commercial Real Estate: A Qualitative Analysis of Decision-making and Investment Practices in Brazil. Financialization and Development in the Global South. Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Working papers

Magnani, M. (in press) Para além das cidades globais: a atuação de investidores financeiros em cidades médias [Beyond global cities: the role of financial investors in medium-sized cities]. In: Shimbo, L.; Bardet, F. “Produzir o valor dos territórios: do rural ao ativo imobiliário-financeiro”.