Apr 15 2014

LSE Review of Books: Linguistic Minorities in Democratic Context

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Williams identifies, however obliquely at times… the need to recognize that despite the urgency of change in the way the modern state operates, there must also be a recognition that there are groups – however small or disparate – that operate as sovereign nations within larger sovereign states, that must ask or demand for their rights to be respected, but whose very existence predates and in essence should not be contingent on the existence of these larger states.

Linguistic minorities in democratic contextZalfa Feghali explains that Colin H. Williams’s book on Linguistic Minorities in Democratic Context highlights a ‘hugely relevant and entirely fascinating issue’. From Spain to the UK and Québec in Canada, Williams uses many case studies to ascertain the power of linguistic minorities in democracy.

Read the full review on the LSE Review of Books blog.

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Apr 11 2014

A student’s thoughts: studying European Political Economy and Finance at LSE

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Edurne Iñigo, 2013 participant

Edurne Iñigo, 2013 participant

Edurne Iñigo is a doctoral researcher in Competitiveness and Economic Development at Deusto Business School. She describes her experience of the European Political Economy and Finance programme at LSE.

I would strongly recommend applying to those who have a profound interest not only in Europe, its history and institutions, but also in the development of international affairs and the role that several global actors (the IMF, MNEs, the EU, nation-states and others) play in it.

One of the greatest perks of attending LSE is the chance to attend public lectures from personalities of great stature, ranging from Nobel Prize winners to former directors of international organisations.

So, what to expect? Expect excellence, participation, EU, horizon widening, smiles, pints at the pub, discussion, London, policy, a little more of London, classes, interesting individuals, reading, international affairs, thinking, politics, getting to know yourself better. Expect one of your best life experiences. Expect opportunity.

Applications for this October’s 10-week programme are open until 12 May. Read more and apply

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Apr 7 2014

Scholarships available to study European Political Economy and Finance at LSE

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Class of 2013

Class of 2013

In my opinion, the EU is getting more social, economic and financial relevance than ever before; therefore, having a precise insight of its mechanisms is vital in order to understand the present and the future of our continent. In fact, one of the great advantages of this programme is its capacity to adopt these issues to a broad range of fields (economic, financial, social, human rights…), which allows you to get the most out of it, regardless of your field of specialisation.

Iñigo Olaran, 2013 participant

The eighth specially selected group of participants from the Basque Country will have the opportunity to undertake a ten-week programme at LSE this October, generously supported by the Diputación Foral de Bizkaia.

Read more and apply

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Apr 4 2014

For Bogotá’s desplazados, living in a high-risk zone is a very mixed blessing (The Guardian)

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 It is becoming increasingly clear that without a bold strategy for fulfilling everyone’s constitutional right to vivienda digna (“decent housing”), risk governance divides the urban population into those whose lives deserve to be protected, and those left to fend for themselves.

Dr Austin Zeiderman, who coordinates the Urban Uncertainty project at LSE Cities, writes about los desplazados, ‘the displaced’ in the Santa Viviana neighbourhood of Bogotá. See the article on The Guardian website.

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Apr 2 2014

LSE Review of Books blog post: Diversity Management in Spain

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The book is not only topical, but it also highlights a dimension, which is seldom forgotten yet central to effectively dealing with diversity: namely, that immigration is a central dimension of diversity but not the only one, and local “autochthonous” or historical languages and identities also need to be addressed in debates about integration and diversity management.

Diversity Management in Spain CoverVerena Wisthaler gives an extensive review of Diversity Management in Spain by Richard Zapata-Barrero, explaining that the book’s main message is a reminder that ‘historical languages and identities’ should be addressed in diversity frameworks. Although the author’s focus is predominantly Spain, mentioning Catalonia, the Basque country and Galicia, as well as recent immigration from Latin America and Africa, Zapata-Barrero’s argument is applicable to many other European countries.

Read the full review on the LSE Review of Books blog.

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Mar 24 2014

Quick catch up with students on the Global Dimensions Programme

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Last week we caught up with two undergraduates from the Universidad Europea de Madrid (UEM) who are coming to the end of the first part of the Global Dimensions Programme.

They shared their thoughts on the programme, studying at LSE and life in London. David, who we also interviewed last month, mentioned that a real highlight was being taught by Robert Funk, while Jesús really enjoyed attending a talk by George Soros.

They arrived at LSE in January for the five-month customised programme which is divided into a ten-week academic course and a four-week applied programme in preparation for a minimum 12-week internship (see also the 24 January post).

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Mar 21 2014

İHasta la próxima!

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Having been at LSE Enterprise for about four months now, my marketing and communications internship must come to an end. It’s been a pleasure working for LSE Enterprise, and having joined shortly after graduating from LSE, it has been a joy working at the university and experiencing it from a different perspective. I have been lucky enough to meet fascinating individuals and attend interesting events, like the LSE Health Summit and events during LSE Mexico Week.

So instead of writing about Spain and Latin America, I’m now off to travel Latin America for six months! Although I say goodbye, I’ll be keeping in touch as I will be lucky enough to meet a few LSE Alumni and friends of LSE Enterprise on my travels (Cheers Yury and Adam!).

I am extremely grateful to everyone at LSE Enterprise, especially Rehanna, for making my time here so enjoyable, but also extremely useful as I’ve gained some valuable experience.

I’ll leave you with five of my favourite posts:

By Joanna Roberts 

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Mar 20 2014

Forbes highlights the six stories to watch in Latin America – part two

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Last month we summarised part of an article in Forbes highlighting some of the stories about Latin America likely to make the headlines this year. Here is part two; a summary of the second set of stories to watch with up-to-date news and a mention of LSE Mexico Week.

The never-ending war on drugs

Forbes acknowledges that although drugs are by no means a new problem in the region, many dynamics have changed, which could require resistance tactics to adapt. Among the many changes: Peru has overtaken Colombia as the world’s largest cocaine producer, the first coca plantation was discovered in rural Panama last year, and marijuana laws are shifting; it has been legalised in two US states, with Uruguay becoming the first nation to fully legalise the trade from April. Forbes explains that changes in the US will no doubt affect trafficking in Mexico, which remains a huge player in the production of marijuana, heroin and methamphetamines. Meanwhile, a recent article by the BBC explains that the Uruguayan government hopes that its legalisation from production to distribution will reduce the number of people using a cheap, highly addictive, new potent substance called “pasta base”.

Challenges ahead for Bachelet

Our post back in December, The hard part is still to come…, explained that Michelle Bachelet’s return to office, although greatly celebrated, came at a cost: significant changes are expected. Forbes explains that following her inauguration earlier this month, the returning president is likely to push many reforms in her first 100 days in office. This will include an increase in corporate tax rates to cover changes to the health and education system. BNamericas has already reported that there are plans to double the funds, in comparison to the previous administration, allocated for hospital infrastructure. Bachelet isn’t shy when it comes to undertaking much needed change. During her previous stint as President, her decisions helped save billions of dollars in revenues to spend on issues such as pension reform.  But unfortunately, as the new Finance Minister Alberto Arenas highlights in the Global Times, Bachelet is inheriting a ‘sluggish economy’ with growth lower than expected. Reuters also explained that the previous Finance Minister, Felipe Larrain, has warned Bachelet that her tax reforms may need to be ‘more moderate’ than planned. In any case, Forbes states that if reforms fail, it’s probable that students will protest once again. In fact, they predict that social unrest is likely to continue either way given the persisting trend in community activism.

Exciting times ahead in Mexico

José Ángel Gurría at LSE Mexico Week

José Ángel Gurría at LSE Mexico Week

Forbes highlights that while big transformations are taking place in Mexico under President Enrique Peña Nieto’s perhaps ambitious reform agenda, the majority of his first year has been spent making constitutional changes. The president now has the task of passing various regulatory reform bills through Congress, Forbes explains. During LSE Mexico Week last week, we were lucky enough to hear José Ángel Gurría, OECD Secretary General and former Mexican Secretary of Foreign Affairs (1994–1997) and Secretary of Finance (1998–2000), give an insight into the economy and development in Mexico. José insisted that the biggest challenge now is successful ‘implementation, implementation, implementation’, of the telecoms, oil and gas, electricity, financial and political reforms. But this will depend on many things including the approval of laws and regulations. José put it in a rather interesting way; it is time for the legislative dentists to begin pulling the teeth out of the legislations. Although the implementation process could be slowed down slightly by political groups opposing certain reforms, Forbes explains that it’s unlikely that the much needed reform process can be derailed. José claimed his message was this; there are exciting times ahead in Mexico. However, the Wall Street Journal reminded us last week that we shouldn’t ‘celebrate Mexico’s reforms just yet’ given the disappointingly low growth last year.

To see more on LSE Mexico week see an article in Spanish.

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Mar 17 2014

LSE Review of Books blog post: Political Power and Women’s Representation in Latin America

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Schwindt-Bayer’s grasp and command of the existing literature is extensive, and the text is impeccably researched. Schwindt-Bayer seeks to bring sometimes competing earlier explanations together, and apply hypotheses used systematically elsewhere to the understudied Latin American case.

Book CoverNatalie Novick explains Leslie Schwindt-Bayer in her book Political Power and Women’s Representation in Latin America manages to fill an important gap in research regarding the causes and consequences of women’s representation in Latin America. With Michelle Bachelet now sworn in as Chile’s returning president, the number of women elected president of Latin American democracies has increased to seven. Novick states that although the findings may be ‘unsurprising’ at times, it is a topical and interesting read.

Read the full book review on the LSE Review of Books blog.

Read an article from the Diplomatic Courier on Latin America’s Leading Ladies.

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Mar 13 2014

A busy week in Madrid

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Peter Sutherland

Sir Peter Sutherland at the Fundación Ramón Areces

Last Wednesday, Juan María Nin, CEO of CaixaBank and Sir Peter Sutherland, Chairman of the Board of LSE gave a free talk on ‘Do Young People have a Future? Education, employment and mobility in the 21st century’. The talk, chaired by Marian Hens, former BBC correspondent and editor, was held at the Fundación Ramón Areces. Reports since the event emphasise Peter Sutherland’s support of Erasmus, explaining that it is a great opportunity for students. The founder of the Erasmus study abroad programme also spoke about the causes of youth unemployment which include the education system and the housing bubble, amongst other factors. Read the rtve.es article about the talk (in Spanish).

Signing with FRA

Simon Flemington, CEO of LSE Enterprise and Raimundo Pérez-Hernández, Director of Fundación Ramón Areces

Simon Flemington, Chief Executive of LSE Enterprise, was in Madrid for the talk, and to sign a new contract with Fundación Ramón Areces for 2014. We have worked with Fundación Ramón Areces for several years now, most recently announcing our second series of LSE Masterclasses in Social Sciences which they generously sponsor.




I am hugely pleased to be able to confirm the joint commitment between LSE and Fundación Ramón Areces for the continuation of our public programme. The first year of our collaboration has seen the successful delivery of a series of masterclasses in the field of public economics and a number of high profile public events on the future development of Europe in the context of the financial crisis. LSE is very grateful to the Fundación Ramón Areces for its commitment and support of this project.

Simon Flemington, CEO, LSE Enterprise

Simon also attended the inauguration of our new office. After many years of working in Spain, LSE Enterprise opened its first wholly managed external office in Madrid last week.

The new space, in the centre of Madrid in Calle Serrano, is the hub for LSE Enterprise´s burgeoning activities in not only Spain and Portugal, but also across Latin America where we are working closely with institutions, governments and corporations in Chile, Peru, Colombia and Mexico.  The LSE space also hosts the British Chamber of Commerce in Spain, and colleagues from related LSE Enterprise projects in executive and student programmes.

Adam Austerfield, our Project Director in Madrid for Spain and Spanish speaking Latin America.

Madrid office

The LSE Enterprise Madrid office

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