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  • Publication Date: 03-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Americas Quarterly
  • Institution: Council of the Americas
  • Abstract: In most countries the process isn't always clear or direct. Who does it, how to do it and how long it can take varies from country to country—a reflection of the vagueness of ILO 169 and the uneven development of government regulations across the hemisphere. To compare, here are the steps you would need to take in Chile, Colombia, Guatemala, and Peru.
  • Political Geography: Colombia, Chile, Peru, Guatemala
  • Author: Diana María Ocampo, Sebastian Agudelo
  • Publication Date: 03-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Americas Quarterly
  • Institution: Council of the Americas
  • Abstract: In Colombia's 2010–2014 National Development Plan, President Juan Manuel Santos listed the mining sector as one of the five engines of the country's economic growth, alongside infrastructure, housing, agriculture, and innovation. At the same time, the government recognized the need for regulatory, legal and policy instruments to make Colombia a regional powerhouse for mining and infrastructure.
  • Political Geography: Colombia
  • Author: Carlos Andrés Baquero Díaz
  • Publication Date: 03-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Americas Quarterly
  • Institution: Council of the Americas
  • Abstract: The right to free, prior and informed consent (FPIC), or consulta previa, has expanded throughout South America. Nine states have ratified the International Labour Organization's Convention 169 (ILO169)—the principal treaty regarding consulta previa.* But regulations created by four of those states—Colombia, Chile, Peru, and Ecuador—contradict the commitments they accepted when they ratified the treaty, in effect violating the right of Indigenous people to be consulted on administrative and legislative measures that could directly affect them.
  • Political Geography: Colombia, South America, Chile, Peru, Ecuador
  • Author: Diana Rodríguez-Franco
  • Publication Date: 03-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Americas Quarterly
  • Institution: Council of the Americas
  • Abstract: On a hot Sunday morning in July 2013, the inhabitants of Piedras, a small municipality in the Colombian Andes, gathered to decide whether large-scale mining activities should be permitted in their territory.
  • Political Geography: Colombia
  • Author: Francisco Miranda Hamburger
  • Publication Date: 03-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Americas Quarterly
  • Institution: Council of the Americas
  • Abstract: On May 25, 32 million Colombians will vote in one of the most important presidential elections in the nation's recent history—an election that will turn on the issue that remains Colombia's greatest challenge: putting an end to the armed conflict.
  • Political Geography: Colombia
  • Author: Carolina Ramirez
  • Publication Date: 03-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Americas Quarterly
  • Institution: Council of the Americas
  • Abstract: The promise of upward mobility for Latin America's new middle classes has led to swelling university enrollment rates, but also to growing debt. In Colombia, high school graduates enrolling in higher education rose from 24.87 percent in 2002 to 45.02 percent in 2012. Meanwhile, in 2011, 23 percent of 25- to 34-year-old Mexicans had attained a university education, compared to only 12 percent of 55- to 64-year-olds.
  • Political Geography: Colombia, Latin America
  • Author: Álvaro José Mejía Arias
  • Publication Date: 03-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Americas Quarterly
  • Institution: Council of the Americas
  • Abstract: Since its formation in February 1971, the Consejo Regional Indígena del Cauca (Regional Indigenous Council of Cauca—CRIC) has made the education of young Indigenous Colombians one of its most important goals.
  • Political Geography: Colombia
  • Author: Cynthia J. Arnson, Jaana Remes, Patricia Ellen, Raúl Rodríguez-Barocio
  • Publication Date: 03-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Americas Quarterly
  • Institution: Council of the Americas
  • Abstract: Colombia's 2014 presidential elections marked a watershed in the country's politics. This was not because incumbent President Juan Manuel Santos won by nearly six percentage points, after having narrowly lost the first round to Óscar Iván Zuluaga, a hardliner backed by Santos's political nemesis, former president Álvaro Uribe.
  • Political Geography: Colombia
  • Author: Alberto Bernal
  • Publication Date: 05-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Americas Quarterly
  • Institution: Council of the Americas
  • Abstract: On July 20, 2010, President Juan Manuel Santos promised the 9 million voters who had just elected him to his first term that he would build on the foundation created “by a giant, our President Álvaro Uribe.” He declared that Colombia could now look to the future with hope, thanks to the multiple successes that Uribe had achieved during his eight years in power.
  • Political Geography: Colombia
  • Author: Juanita León
  • Publication Date: 05-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Americas Quarterly
  • Institution: Council of the Americas
  • Abstract: After three years of negotiations with the Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarios de Colombia (Revloutionary Armed Forces of Colombia—FARC) Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos has decided to go all-in on securing peace for his country. His political and personal commitment became clear earlier this year when he staked his entire campaign for his second term in office on being the candidate of peace. His inauguration, and inaugural speech, drew heavily on the rhetoric and symbols of peace, with multiple images of white doves, including dove lapel pins for the guests.
  • Political Geography: Colombia
  • Author: Rodrigo Uprimny Yepes, Nelson Camilo Sanchez
  • Publication Date: 05-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Americas Quarterly
  • Institution: Council of the Americas
  • Abstract: Ultimately, the success of any peace agreement between the Colombian government and the country's largest guerrilla group, the Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia—FARC), will hinge on reconciliation. A successful process of reconciliation requires finding the balance between defending the rights of victims and gaining the trust of former combatants—members of the armed forces and the FARC—that they are not being unfairly punished.
  • Political Geography: Colombia
  • Author: Ramon Campos Iriarte
  • Publication Date: 05-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Americas Quarterly
  • Institution: Council of the Americas
  • Abstract: The recent 50th anniversary of the Ejército de Liberación Nacional (National Liberation Army—ELN) led journalist Ramón Campos Iriarte to the jungles of Colombia's western Chocó province, where open war between guerrillas, government forces and paramilitary groups has been escalating. The ELN—self-defined as a Marxist-Leninist organization influenced by liberation theology—was created on July 4, 1964, in the mountains of central Colombia by a group of students and clerics inspired by the Cuban Revolution.
  • Topic: War
  • Political Geography: Colombia, Cuba
  • Author: Alejandro Eder Garcés
  • Publication Date: 05-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Americas Quarterly
  • Institution: Council of the Americas
  • Abstract: Colombia finds itself at a watershed in the country's history. With the possible end to over half a century of violence, a new peaceful future beckons. But Colombia's much-desired peace will not just fall from the sky. It will have to be built by all Colombians through an arduous, perhaps decades-long process.
  • Political Geography: Colombia
  • Author: Ricardo Argüello
  • Publication Date: 05-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Americas Quarterly
  • Institution: Council of the Americas
  • Abstract: Armed conflict and the presence of non-state armed actors harm both agricultural production and rural households' well-being, for at least two broad reasons. First, conflict disrupts economic activities by hampering access to critical inputs and markets. As a result, producers may reduce or curtail planting or harvesting. Second, rural producers face an unpredictable environment for making economic decisions. Armed actors may “tax” producers, coerce them into growing particular crops (licit and illicit) or require them to follow their rules regarding production and land use. In these cases, farmers grow what will produce the least risk to their quality of life and safety.
  • Political Geography: Colombia
  • Author: Marcela Prieto
  • Publication Date: 05-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Americas Quarterly
  • Institution: Council of the Americas
  • Abstract: From its very beginning, Colombia's peace process has aroused enormous expectations, not only within Colombian borders, but also in the international community. The negotiation is, in good measure, the result of the “Policy of Democratic Security” adopted by President Álvaro Uribe Vélez during his two terms (2002 to 2010), which helped limit the Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia—FARC), weakened the group structurally and turned the dynamic of the armed confrontation back in the state's favor.
  • Political Geography: Colombia
  • Author: Joydeep Mukherji
  • Publication Date: 05-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Americas Quarterly
  • Institution: Council of the Americas
  • Abstract: Colombia has already had the foresight and wisdom to analyze the experience of other countries in bringing internal conflicts to an end—including South Africa, the Philippines and Northern Ireland. As I write, representatives of the conflicting parties in Northern Ireland have just finished meeting Colombian government and FARC negotiators.
  • Political Geography: South Africa, Philippines, Colombia, North Ireland
  • Author: Jose Antonio Caballero
  • Publication Date: 04-2014
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Americas Quarterly
  • Institution: Council of the Americas
  • Abstract: Judiciary: The Courts in Mexico BY JOSÉ ANTONIO CABALLERO The steady process of change in judicial organizations in Mexico, which began in the mid-1990s, was given a major boost in the past few years with four constitutional amendments. The most significant is a 2008 amendment requiring that all state and federal judicial systems transition from a written-based inquisitorial system to an oral-based accusatorial one by 2016. This will bring greater transparency while better protecting the rights of the accused and allowing for the presumption of innocence until proven guilty. Halfway into the transition phase, though, the processes' slow implementation poses a risk that states won't meet the 2016 deadline.
  • Topic: Government
  • Political Geography: Colombia, Central America, Caribbean, Mexico
  • Author: Robin Dean
  • Publication Date: 04-2014
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Americas Quarterly
  • Institution: Council of the Americas
  • Abstract: The crowd at Rock al Parque 2012. Photo: Diego Santacruz/AP Rock al Parque With one of the richest musical cultures in the Americas, Colombia has added rock to its repertoire. Devout fans of the music that inspired generations of American and British teenagers since the 1950s have been gathering every year in Bogotá's Simón Bolívar Metropolitan Park for Rock al Parque (Rock in the Park), the region's largest annual rock festival.
  • Topic: Government
  • Political Geography: America, Colombia, Jamaica
  • Author: Diana Villiers Negroponte
  • Publication Date: 04-2014
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Americas Quarterly
  • Institution: Council of the Americas
  • Abstract: In April last year, the Colombian government announced its intention to pursue the creation of an interconnected electrical grid from Mexico to Tierra del Fuego. Naming the project "Connecting the Americas 2022" ("Connect 2022" ), the Colombians had picked up the idea from Washington and included it in last year's agenda at the Summit of the Americas. The goal, as defined by the hemispheric governments that attended the summit, is to create an integrated electrical grid that can provide universal access to electricity through enhanced energy interconnections, power sector investments, renewable energy development, and cooperation. Should it succeed, the project will bring together regional electricity grids, including the Central American electrical grid, known by its Spanish acronym, SIEPAC (see Jeremy Martin's article on the difficulty of completing SIPAC on page 102 of this issue), with South American networks. Completing it, though, requires passing through the Darién Gap.
  • Political Geography: Colombia, South America, Germany, Mexico
  • Author: Alejandro Eder Garcés
  • Publication Date: 04-2014
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Americas Quarterly
  • Institution: Council of the Americas
  • Abstract: After more than half a century of conflict, efforts to disarm, demobilize and reintegrate Colombia's warring groups are just beginning to take hold. While a few small left-wing guerrilla groups were demobilized in the 1990s, successful reintegration of thousands of ex-combatants—most of them right-wing paramilitaries—into peaceful society has remained elusive. But that seems to be changing. Reintegration involves providing ex-combatants with the educational, material and personal tools to become citizens and gain sustainable employment and income. It is a social and economic process with an open-ended time frame. Because it's so specialized, it mostly takes place at the local level.
  • Political Geography: Colombia