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Rural Transformation and Changing Climates Focus of Annual LAII Symposium

November 8, 2018

Rural Transformation and Changing Climates Focus of Annual LAII Symposium

Image adapted from photograph reprinted via CC © Heinz Plenge (FAO/MINAG) .

In Latin American societies where inequality is extremely high, climate change is increasingly disruptive, economic liberalization is rapid and radical, and globalization is overwhelming local cultures, rural transformation is happening. Despite the challenges, small holder agriculture and rural people continue to contribute to the rural economy and to society at large, asserting their agency and shaping their emerging environments.

Addressing the timely theme of “Rural Transformation in Latin America's Changing Climate," The University of New Mexico's Latin American and Iberian Institute (LAII) hosts its fifth Richard E. Greenleaf Interdisciplinary Symposium on Latin America Wednesday-Friday, Nov. 14-16. This annual event, which is free and open to the public, will be held in the Bobo Room at UNM's Hodgin Hall.

The symposium brings together leading researchers in the field alongside exceptional junior scholars to advance theoretical understandings of critical issues in Latin America. Over the course of the symposium, local and invited faculty, and graduate students will take part in plenary talks with guest speakers, facilitated discussions and lightning-round style research presentations. Participants will be asked to consider smallholder agriculture and rural landscapes within the context of ecological, political and economic transformation in Latin America.

Symposium sessions will focus on three main themes: agroecology, water governance, and security measures, while touching on topics related to food systems and food sovereignty, labor migration, water and resource governance, climate change, rural development, and competing interests among nation-states, industry, and rural peoples. 

The symposium is held in honor of Dr. Richard E. Greenleaf (1930-2012), a distinguished scholar of colonial Latin America who had an extensive career in teaching, research and service at UNM and beyond.

The event is organized under the leadership of a steering committee composed of Benjamin Warner and Chris Duvall of the Department of Geography and Environmental Studies, Jami Nuñez of the Department of Political Science and Marygold Walsh-Dilley of the Honors College. The symposium has been generously supported by the Department of Geography and Environmental Studies, Department of Political Science, Honors College, National Security Studies Program, Office of the Provost and the Phi Beta Kappa New Mexico Chapter.

Registration is requested to aid with planning. For complete information, see the symposium website