Educated in Spain and Britain, Professor Rodríguez-Salgado taught at the universities of St. Andrews and Newcastle-Upon-Tyne before joining the LSE in 1985. She retired in 2015 but continues her work with the European Research Council.
Professor Rodríguez-Salgado has pursued a number of research areas, most notably international relations in the early-modern period, with particular reference to the global empire of the Spanish Habsburg monarchs (e.g.: The Changing Face of Empire: Charles V, Philip II and Habsburg Authority 1551-1559 (Cambridge University Press, Cambridge etc.., 1988 and reprint 2008; Spanish and Italian editions, 1992, 1994); 'Obeying the ten commandments: Charles V and France', in W. Blockmans & N. Mout (eds.), The World of Emperor Charles V (Amsterdam, 2004), pp.15-67. ‘«Ni cerrando ni abriendo la puerta» Las negociaciones de paz entre Felipe II e Isabel I, 1594-8’ in: A. Marcos Martín (ed.) Hacer Historia desde Simancas. Homenaje a José Luis Rodríguez de Diego (Valladolid, 2011) pp.632-660; 'Guerra sorda, paz ruidosa. Las relaciones de Felipe II e Inglaterra.', in L.A. Ribot García (ed.), La Monarquía de Felipe II a Debate (Madrid, 2000) pp.63-119; ”I loved him as a father loves a son ... Europe may curse me then, but from him, I deserved only gratitude”. Philip II’s relations with Rudolf II’ in: J.Martínez Millán & R. González (eds): La Dinastía de los Austria. Las relaciones entre la Monarquía Católica y el Imperio (3 vols., Madrid, 2011), vol. I pp.335-389.)
Relations between Christian and Muslim powers have also resulted in publications such as: Felipe II. El "Paladín de la Cristiandad" y la Paz con el Turco (Salamanca, 2004); 'Carolus Africanus: Carlos V y el Turco', in: J. Martínez Millán (ed), Carlos V y la quiebra del humanismo político en Europa, 1530-1558 (Madrid, 2000) pp.487-531.
Early-modern Court. Rodríguez-Salgado has also researched and published on the early-modern European court, including: 'The Court of Philip II of Spain' in R. Asch and A.M. Birke (Eds), Princes, Patronage and the Nobility. The Court at the Beginning of the Modern Age c.1450-1650 (Oxford University Press, 1991) pp.205-244; 'Honour and profit at the court of Philip II of Spain' in M. Aymard & M. Romani (eds) La Cour comme Institution Economique (Éditions de la Maison Des Sciences de l'Homme, Paris, 1998) pp.67-86; ‘Ferrante Gonzaga: The Champion of Innocence.’ in: G. Signorotto (ed.) Ferrante Gonzaga. Il Mediterraneo, L’Impero (1507-1557) (Rome, 2009) pp.139-196; ‘”Una Perfecta Princesa” Casa y vida de la reina Isabel de Valois (1559-1568). Primera Parte.’, in: C. Gómez-Centurión Jimenez (ed.), Monarquía y Corte en la España Moderna, Monografías de Cuadernos de Historia Moderna, Anejo II, (Madrid, 2003), pp.39-96; part II in: Cuadernos de Historia Moderna, vol.28 (Madrid, 2003) pp.7198.
Documentaries, exhibitions, media. Her extensive use of visual and material sources in addition to written and published documentation led to her involvement with media, taking part in a number of televised documentaries (BBC Armada week, Elizabeth’s Pirates, The Map Makers, A la sombra del Emperador etc.), and several exhibitions (Felipe II. Un monarca y su época, 1998 etc.), and most notably curating the major National Maritime Exhibition on the Armada. The exhibition and its catalogue (Armada. The Official Catalogue of the National Maritime Museum Exhibition, with contributions from the NMM staff, Penguin Books, 1988) became a model for later historical exhibitions. It was followed by the collection edited with Dr. S. Adams, England, Spain and the Gran Armada, 1585-1604. Essays from the Anglo-Spanish Conferences, London and Madrid 1988 (Edinburgh, 1991). She participated in an important contribution commemorating Charles V edited by H. Soly – Charles V. 1500-1558 with 'Charles V and the dynasty', pp.27-111 (English, French and Dutch editions, Antwerp, 1999; Spanish and German editions, 2000)
Identity. Another important strand has been her work on identity. This has focused on the multi-ethnic Spanish empire (publications include 'Patriotismo y Política exterior en la España de Carlos V y Felipe II', in F. Ruiz Martín (ed) La Proyección Europea de la Monarquía Hispánica (Madrid, 1996) pp.49-105; 'Christian, Civilised and Spanish. Multiple identities in sixteenth-century Spain', in Transactions of the Royal Historical Society, 6th series, vol. VIII (December 1998) pp.233-251) and on Europe. For a number of years she co-taught a master’s course on the development of a distinct European identity and her ideas have been expressed at different levels, from her contribution to The European Economic and Social Commitee’s Lectures and Debates on the current and future nature of the European project ('Forging a European Identity', Treffen, Brussels, 12.5.2005); to the popular introduction 'In Search of Europe', History Today (February 1992) vol.42 pp.11-15. [the basis of a Swedish Radio programme, Summer 1992] to the more recently the BBC Radio 3 documentary Sunday Feature (February & August 2005) Europe of the Mind.
Recently she has participated in interdisciplinary projects including Silencing Human Rights (see: ‘ “How oppression thrives where truth is not allowed a voice.’ The Spanish polemic about the American Indians.’ In: G.K. Bhambra & R.Shilliam (eds.) Silencing Human Rights. Critical engagements with a contested project (Palgrave Macmillan, 2008) pp.19-42.