Politics, Business & Culture in the Americas

How Foreign Policy Can Help Address Brazil’s Violence Epidemic

Last week, Fórum Brasileiro de Segurança Pública, a well-respected NGO based in São Paulo, published a series of grim statistics. In 2015, a staggering 58,383 people were assassinated in Brazil. The number of murders in Brazil increased over 250 percent in the last three decades, jumping from 13,910 in 1980 to above 50,000 in 2012. … Read more


Life in Venezuela’s – and the World’s – Most Violent City

Leer en español Already the most dangerous city in the world, Venezuela’s capital is only getting more dangerous for people like city councilman Jesús Armas. Since the 29-year-old was first elected in December 2013, he has seen the Caracas’ murder rate rise to 120 homicides per 100,000 people – and he expects this to worsen further amid … Read more

heaven and hell in the same day

Brazil, Heaven and Hell in the Same Day

Last Thursday began beautifully, deep in the Brazilian Amazon, with a walk through a lush city park. I strolled among bougainvillea and castanha do Pará and samaúma trees. I saw a large red and blue macaw ambling down the sidewalk, and had just sat down to take a selfie with him when the little jerk … Read more

Police at a protest rally in Bogota

Latin America’s Poverty Is Down, But Violence Is Up. Why?

Versão em português With poverty in Latin America and the Caribbean at its lowest level in decades, why is violence off the charts? Although some countries are worse off than others, the region features the world’s highest homicide rates. This relationship is puzzling and counterintuitive. Researchers tend to expect an inverse relationship between improvements in the welfare of the … Read more


High Inequality

Latin America suffers from both the world’s highest rate of income inequality and from a lackluster economic performance that puts it well behind the growth levels of other emerging regions such as Asia. Could there be a connection? Recent research suggests that high inequality and low social mobility are more than just poor people’s problems: … Read more

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