CIPR | Center For Inter-American Policy & Research

Tulane University

Dr. Gabriel Hetland Speaks on Participatory Democracy

On September 20, 2017, political sociologist Dr. Gabriel Hetland (SUNY Albany) presented his research on urban participatory governance in Latin America.

While conducting his research, Dr. Hetland spent 22 months over nearly 10 years in four different communities – two in Venezuela and two in Bolivia – in order to study the effectiveness of participatory democracy in different political contexts. The cities where Dr. Hetland carried out his research were governed by both right-wing and left-wing political parties and located in countries with very different relationships between civil society and the state.

Dr. Hetland found that, contrary to popular belief, Venezuela’s top-down, state-led approach to participatory governance actually appeared to be more successful in translating citizens’ opinions into public policies than the bottom-up, grassroots approach taken in Bolivia. Another major finding was that, despite the association of participatory governance with left-wing political parties, center-right and right-wing governments can also foster effective popular participation under the right circumstances.

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Latin American Graduate Oraganization (LAGO) 2018 Conference: Call for Proposals

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The Latin American Graduate Organization will be hosting its 2018 Latin American Studies Conference titled Thinking of the Future: Expanding the possible in the Americas (Pensando en el porvenir: Expandiendo lo posible en las Américas) February 23 – 25, 2018, at Tulane University, in New Orleans, Louisiana.

This year, the conference topic is meant to challenge academics and activists to move beyond critiques and recommendations of how to address modern days issues, and instead articulate a vision of and for the future.

The LAGO Conference welcomes all disciplines and all approaches, as long as the project attempts to grapple with the idea of building something better. This is a Latin American Studies Conference, but creative writers, journalists, artists, performers, organizers, lawyers and healthcare providers as well as graduate students and other academics are welcome. Proposals are accepted in Spanish, Portuguese, Haitian Creole, and English.

Deadlines: Abstracts of papers and projects are due November 25, 2017. Abstracts of papers or project descriptions must not exceed 300 words.

Please contact lago.tulane@gmail.com with questions. For more information, visit the official conference website.