Politics, Business & Culture in the Americas

YES: Enhanced Regulation Will Keep Speculators at Bay

Latin America is all too familiar with financial volatility. The policy tools developed by Latin American central bankers and economic policymakers in response to previous crises will therefore serve them well today. But those tools still need to be improved. The boom-bust tendency of liberalized financial and capital markets has again been evident in recent … Read more


10 Things to Do: Bogotá ([i]full text[/i])

Bogotá is 8,500 feet closer to the stars, or so goes the city motto. But Bogotá boasts more than just beautiful Andean views and year-round spring-like weather. The array of cultural and gastronomic offerings makes the city one of the best-kept secrets in South America. 1) Salseando. For the un-initiated, Bogotá’s club scene—a mix of … Read more


Social Networking en Español

Reading Time: 3 minutes

When Facebook en español launched last year, Marta Vélez, a Bogotá homemaker, received an invitation to join from her daughter Alejandra in New York. She’s still working through some of the technical hassles, but Marta couldn’t be more pleased. “The part about putting up photos still seems pretty tricky, but I can look at my daughter’s photos,” says Marta, who now checks her Facebook messages every morning over breakfast. She’s not alone.

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Ask the Experts: How will the Internet Change in the Next Five Years?

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Evan’s Top Ten:

1. Data Is Supplanting Web Pages

The Web is less and less a “place” made of up “sites” that “surfers” find and explore; it is increasingly a collection of data that we can fetch whenever we want, in any format. Think RSS on steroids. Care to see the latest news headlines but linked to the locations where the events took place and superimposed on a map? No problem. In this new environment, Web destinations become Web services, whether you’re thinking of news, entertainment, travel, shopping, politics, or anything at all.

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Digital Democracy

There is no development without innovation. This is as true today as it was during the Renaissance and the Industrial Revolution. Our challenge in the Americas is that, while some countries are leaders in science, technology, innovation, and development, the majority are constantly struggling to catch up. In Uruguay, we have chosen to stand with … Read more


How to Fulfill the Promise of CSR

Corporate social responsibility (CSR) is a booming business in Latin America. Major companies like the Chilean copper giant Codelco and the Brazilian energy multinational Petrobras proudly use their environmental stewardship and good labor practices to demonstrate that their corporate operations are aligned with social goals. Across the region, Latin American firms are making social investments … Read more


Back to Basics

Reading Time: 11 minutes

The perennial argument over social policy—universalism versus targeted subsidies to the poor—is once again galvanizing policymakers and scholars across the region. In recent decades, Latin American governments have generally inclined toward limited social assistance programs, but that model is increasingly under attack in a continent where high levels of inequality continue to be endemic.

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Democracy’s Growing Pains

Twelve Elections: Two Messages The rounds of elections in 2005–2006 carry two messages, the presidents say. The first was positive: Latin Americans remain committed to elections as the path to political change. Even the sharp political differences, clashing political visions exposed by the electoral campaigns, and the persistence of stark inequalities did not dampen citizens’ … Read more


We’re All in This Together

The nations of the Americas have never been as important to each other as they are today. With exponential advances in technology and strong natural connections, our societies are bound together as never before across the full spectrum of human contact. From migration and demographic changes, to a record level of commercial interaction and interdependence, … Read more


Not Another Generation

Reading Time: 11 minutes

The 2007 defeat of comprehensive immigration reform was one of the bitterest and bloodiest routs in recent memory in the U.S. Senate. The President and powerful lawmakers from both parties had invested their reputations in an overhaul. More than a million people had marched in the streets in support. Some 85 percent of the public had an opinion on the legislation. And no one on either side questioned that the immigration system desperately needed an overhaul. Yet after the vote, Congress dropped the issue as if it were radioactive.

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Let’s Confront Global Challenges Together

As a new president prepares to take office in the U.S., this seems like a good opportunity to evaluate both the progress that has been made and the challenges that remain in the relationship between the U.S. and Latin America, with an eye toward the future we face together. The world is ripe for a … Read more


Build on Regional Successes

Reading Time: 4 minutes

The next President-elect should engage with the hemisphere, in conjunction with his North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) partners, through an approach that incorporates the private sector and that builds on the successful macroeconomic and financial sector reforms that have been made in many markets. This approach would focus on a broader policy agenda that supports the economic and social development priorities in these markets since, as we’ve seen with the financial sector, increased capacity and development strengthens the hemisphere as a whole.

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Reexamine the War on Drugs

Reading Time: 4 minutes

The Next U.S. president has a unique leverage to shape humanity’s destiny. The disproportionate importance of the United States to the affairs of other countries creates a cruel paradox for those of us who are not U.S. citizens. We do not have the right to vote, but the outcome of the presidential elections will have a greater impact on Latin Americans—as well as on the citizens of other countries—than the outcome of our own local contests.

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