A message from our
Program Director

This month in the Regional Office

Dear *|FNAME|*,

It is a great pleasure to welcome you to the David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies Regional Office monthly newsletter.  The goal of this newsletter is to give you an update on our activities each month and to anticipate some of the activities that will take place in the near future. We hope that this newsletter will keep you well informed of programs that are carried out by the Regional Office, as well as stimulate areas of your interest.

For those of you new to the Regional Office, let me take a minute to outline what we are all about. Eleven years ago, the office was established to represent Harvard in Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Peru, and Uruguay. The principal goal is to broaden engagement in the region for Harvard students and faculty, and to open up new opportunities for people and institutions in the region at Harvard. In the last eleven years, there have been over 100 collaborative research projects in the five countries. Over 1000 Harvard students have participated in courses and internships, and more than 1800 students and scholars from the region have studied in the University. We are grateful to hundreds of collaborators who have contributed to the success of the Regional Office, especially to Andrónico Luksic, who provides significant financial support, and to the Harvard faculty and alumni who continue to support our efforts in the region.  We welcome your feedback on this newsletter and on the projects and programs described.


Ned Strong
Program Director

New Efforts in Peru

On November 22, DRCLAS Advisory Committee Chair, Tony Custer, organized a meeting in Lima with Eduardo Hochschild, the founder of the Universidad Tecnológica (UTEC), and Regional Office representative Patricia Cespedes and Program Director Ned Strong.  The meetings were designed to explore areas in which Harvard could collaborate in UTEC’s development.  UTEC is affiliated with TECSUP, and is considered one of Peru’s leading technical tertiary institutions, focusing on technological education and the mining industry.  

Plans for the university include a state-of-the–art campus and an emphasis on international collaborations. The Harvard’s School of Engineering and Applies Sciences (SEAS) has organized student exchanges with UTEC and will host a group of UTEC students in January 2014. Over the next several weeks, the Regional Office will be consulting with Cambridge and UTEC colleagues to consider potential new areas of collaboration.

Neglected Diseases

In late November, Maria Jose Ferreyra, the Regional Office representative in Argentina, and Ned Strong met in Buenos Aires with Dr. Graciela Ciccia, Director of Innovation and Technological Development of Grupo INSUD and Sonia Tarragona, Executive Director of Mundo Sano, a non-profit subsidiary of the international pharmacological company, INSUD. 

Mundo Sano works mostly in addressing “neglected” diseases such as chagas and soil transmitted parasites in several countries in Latin America, Europe, and Africa.  They have established collaborations with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Clinton Global Initiative, among others.  The Regional Office has begun conversations with Professor 
Tom Bossert of the Harvard School of Public Health to explore ways in which Mundo Sano can address one of the biggest challenges it faces, establishing effective delivery systems, an area of expertise of Harvard School of Public Health.

Marginal Histories: the Films of Pablo Larraín at the Harvard Film Archive

From November 16-18, the David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies and the Harvard Film Archive hosted the 4th Annual ARTS@DRCLAS – HFA film retrospective, with a panel discussion by Chilean film director Pablo Larraín, and an exhibition of three of his most important films: Tony Manero, No, and Post Mortem

Over 250 members of the Harvard community attended these three showings, which were part of the DRCLAS Democracy and Memory in Latin America series of events. 

Recupera Chile's Health Initiatives

On November 11, Recupera Chile organized a meeting with over 50 parents of preschool and kindergarten children, attending public schools in Dichato. One of the main goals of this meeting was to teach parents about the importance of preventive vision care, as studies show that children who have a vision-related illness and do not wear the proper corrective eyeglasses tend to develop learning impairments.
In collaboration with the Dichato municipality, Pilar del Canto, Recupera Chile
’s coordinator of health-related endeavors in Dichato, Mario Valdivia and Mónica Troncoso, members of Medical School of Universidad de Concepción, coordinated medical examinations given to local children to determine if they were in need of corrective eyewear. The examinations unveiled more than 80 cases of children with visual anomalies. Recupera Chile committed to donating corrective lenses to each diagnosed child, and will continue to encourage parents to teach their children about the importance of the use of eyeglasses.

Another objective of the meeting was to conduct a survey to evaluate the impact of Recupera Chile’s initiatives in Dichato, and in turn reassess the community’s needs, specifically focusing on families with children. Recupera Chile has initiated a number of health interventions, led by Harvard Medical School Professor 
Judith Palfrey, to create transformational change in the community. The current survey will assess how the community’s needs and quality of life have changed over the past three years and will identify future area of focus for community rebuilding. The current survey will also be used to modify existing programs, as well to create novel education, health, economic, and environmental initiatives.

For more information about the DRCLAS Regional Office and Recupera Chile's impact in the communities of Dichato, Cobquecura and Perales, watch this video.

Harvard Alumni Association Regional Meeting

On November 9, the Harvard Club of Chile hosted the Harvard Alumni Association regional meeting for Latin America.  Representatives from Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Argentina, Panama, Mexico, and Brazil joined HAA President, Catherine Gellert, and HAA Associate Director, Sari Aske for the annual regional meeting in Santiago.  The event was kicked off with a welcoming cocktail in which Alberto Fisher of Fundación Chile gave a very interesting talk on innovation, and the President of the Harvard Club of Chile, Miguel Lopez, gave a review of the activities of the club, highlighting the collaboration with the DRCLAS Regional Office and the success of the HACIA Democracy program.

HPSH-Andres Bello Collaborations

In 2012, the Harvard School of Public Health and the Universidad Andres Bello (UAB) entered into an agreement, facilitated by the DRCLAS Regional Office, to collaborate in several areas and expand current efforts headed by Professor Tom Bossert and the UAB Director of the Institute of Public Health, Hector Sanchez. Among other activities the agreement provides targeted executive education programs in health systems management and policy for Andres Bello students and faculty in Boston.  In November 2013, the second group of 50 students and faculty participated in this HSPH program
in Boston.

Transversal: A Latin American Poetry Lab

On November 5, Argentinian poets Washington Cucurto and Tamara Kamenszain and Chilean poet Malú Urriola read their works in the kickoff event of Transversal: A Latin American Poetry Lab, sponsored by ARTS@DRCLAS, the Woodberry Poetry Room, and the Department of Romance Languages and Literatures

TRANSVERSAL is a multi-year partnership to promote contemporary Latin American poetry through a series of translation and transcreation initiatives. The Fall 2013 symposium featured public readings, installations, a translation workshop and an undergraduate seminar. Click 
here to read the full story. 

Regional Office Signs Agreement with Fundación Mar de Chile

In early November, after defining areas of common interest, procedures, and effectiveness of their programs, the DRCLAS Regional Office signed an agreement with Fundación Mar de Chile to develop maritime initiatives. The agreement will develop educational programs related to the sea in support of initiatives such as Recupera Chile and potential scientific research of the Chilean sea.

The agreement was signed on board the yatch Supremo III between Ned Strong and the President of Fundación Mar de Chile, Luis Cambiaso.

Early Childhood Education in Chile

On November 4 and 5, Paula Fernandez and Carolina Diaz, Fundación Educacional Oportunidad representatives, offered training to a group of 5 professors of the
Universidad de Concepción School of Education and 10 early childhood education students, who are currently participating actively in the education project of Recupera Chile. The training focused on techniques to improve children's language comprehension, vocabulary and writing. These techniques are to be implemented in kindergarten and preschool classrooms in Cobquecura, Dichato and Perales, through weekly visits by the workshop participants. Recupera Chile also delivered 9 libraries of 20 books each to be used in the classroom by educators in implementing these strategies.

Harvard Film Archive Director in Chile

In October, the DRCLAS Regional Office, through the ARTS@DRCLAS program, hosted Professor Haden Guest, Director of the Harvard Film Archive, in the three-day symposium: El Documental Norteamericano Contemporáneo: La Producción de Harvard. This workshop series featured screenings of three emblematic documentaries created by directors associated with Harvard: Robert Gardner's Forrest of Bliss, Lucien Castaing-Taylor and Véréna Paravel's Leviathan, and Ed Pincus' Panola.

The symposium, hosted in collaboration with the
Faculty of Communications of Universidad Católica de Chile (PUC), Cineteca Nacional del Centro Cultural La Moneda and the U.S. Embassy in Chile,  attracted over 350 spectators. The event came to a close with a lecture by Professor Haden Guest and a roundtable discussion with the Director of Cineteca Nacional del Centro Cultural la Moneda , Ignacio Aliaga, and Universidad Católica professors, Paola Castillo y Pablo Corro. Prior to the symposium, Guest participated in 20° FICVALDIVIA, an international film festival in the city of Valdivia, Chile.

Community Recovery: Rebuilding Disaster-Damaged Communities in Chile
January 2-18, 2014.

Professor Douglas Ahlers will direct a Winter Term Course for 15 Harvard Kennedy School graduate students in collaboration with the DRCLAS Regional Office. The course applies economic development and disaster recovery skills in field-based team projects that assist the residents of the earthquake damaged towns of Dichato, Perales, and Cobquecura.

Health Reform and Community Medicine in Chile 
January 2-24, 2014.

Professor Thomas Bossert will direct a Winter Term Course for 15 HSPH graduate students in collaboration with the DRCLAS Regional Office. The course is designed to allow students to see first-hand major current public health issues.

Experiential Learning Program: Healthcare in Rural Settings
January 2-21, 2014.

In collaboration with Universidad Mayor, the DRCLAS Regional Office will welcome 12 Harvard undergraduates in this January Program. Students will experience full linguistic, social, and cultural immersion, while participating in community service activities related to rural healthcare.

Lengua, Cultura, Gastronomía y Servicio a la Comunidad
January 5-21, 2014.

Dr. Johanna Liander will direct this January Program for 12 Harvard undergraduates, in collaboration with the DRCLAS Regional Office. Students will have the opportunity to improve their Spanish while learning about Peruvian culture, history and gastronomy.

HBS Interviews in the Region

Harvard Business School representatives Andrew Elrick and Pam Ralston visited Chile in November to interview candidates applying to HBS. During their visit, they met with Regional Office staff to report on HBS international activities, including the move of the Latin America Research Center to Sao Paulo from Buenos Aires. This move will follow the upcoming retirement of the founding director of LARC, Gustavo Herrero, on December 31. We join hundreds of admirers to wish Gustavo well in his new pursuits .

Corporate Governance

Professor Stephen Davis from the Harvard Law School visited Chile in November.  Professor Davis is an expert on corporate governance focusing on developing awareness of risks that expose boards as they oversee the conduct of business.  Professor Davis stated that one of the biggest challenges of boards is effectively dealing with communities and constituents regarding company investments and actions directly affecting these communities.  His visit was sponsored by KPMG, Universidad de Chile, and the American Chamber of Commerce in Chile.

Improving Higher Education

Noel McGinn, emeritus professor of the Harvard Graduate School of Education, visited Chile and was hosted by Universidad Autonoma (UA) President and former Minister of Education, Ernesto Schiffelbein.  Professor McGinn is assisting UA in its efforts to develop more effective systems of teaching and learning.  His efforts have included developing a new culture of requiring students to read materials prior to in-class discussions, an innovative practice, still underutilized in many universities throughout the region.  Student surveys confirm the positive reactions to this innovation.

The David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies is grateful to its friends and donors for their commitment and support. We are particularly grateful to Andrónico Luksic for his great generosity, supporting core activities of our Regional Office and contributing to this decade of success. 
Copyright © 2013 David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies, Regional Office, All rights reserved.

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