Maria holds an MA in Political Science (2002) and a PhD in Contemporary History from Roma Tre (2009) and an MSc in Water Management from UNESCO-IHE (2009). She specializes in urban water and sanitation services, politics of development aid, and formal and informal water service modalities.
Maria Rusca is currently working as a Marie Curie Skłodowska Research Fellow at King’s College London. She worked as a Senior Lecturer in Water Governance at UNESCO-IHE, where she participated in international multidisciplinary research projects, such as the UPaRF project Partnerships in Water and sanitation in Sub-Saharan Africa. She was Principal Investigator in the research project UNHIDE (Uncovering Hidden Dynamics in Slum Environments), dealing with politics of water service modalities in cities in the Global South.
She has been invited to give seminars, lectures and training courses in the US, Italy, Namibia and the Netherlands. She has worked as a consultant for GLOWS/USAID and is co-founder of an NGO, Roma Capitale Mondiale per l’Acqua (RCMA)/Through Waters, dedicated to improving water service delivery in rural and peri-urban areas of developing countries. She has co-authored various papers on dynamics of water services in cities in the global South.