Professor Sandra Jovchelovitch delivered a keynote address to the 17th Brazilian Congress of Sociology, taking place in Porto Alegre, Brazil, 20-23 July 2015. Sandra spoke on “Corruption and Blood: Representations and change in the Brazilian public sphere”.

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This blog uses content from RioRealblog’s original post covering the launch of the toolkit for bottom-up social development, as well as the Favelas@LSE blog. To read a full account of the launch event by RioRealblog please click here.

In addition to delivering the keynote speech at the 17th Brazilian Congress of Sociology, Sandra Jovchelovitch has also been in Brazil to launch a toolbox for bottom-up social development in Rio favelas — the result of a study undertaken by the London School of Economics, UNESCO, and the Banco Itaú’s departments dealing with social and cultural support. The study focused on the work of two pioneers, Afroreggae and  CUFA.

The toolkit provides information, resources and tools based on understanding the characteristics of how social development is being implemented from the bottom-up in the favelas. The views and experiences of a wide variety of stakeholders, including the police, the private sector, the media, the government, international organisations and experts, were included in the formation of the toolkit. Over a three year research period of working with Afroreggae and  CUFA, it was discovered that despite the economic and social hardships, which contributed to exclusion and suffering, many people in the favelas had developed competencies and skills to resist such pressures and bring about social development.

Organisations within the favelas demonstrate agency and capability for positive change, combining a focus on individuals and communities, using the arts and the imagination to fuel collective action, and acting on urban frontiers through innovative partnerships. Their wide-ranging actions include community participation, urban regeneration, reintegration of ex-detainees to their communities, and workshops, concerts and plays that broaden the imaginations and the life expectations and dreams of favela youth. This model of bottom-up social development can work everywhere because it is founded on universal dimensions: the human self as protagonist, the power of the imagination and the value of dialogue as a tool for managing difference and conflict.

A full account of the toolkit launch, which describes in detail the key points of dialogue from the meeting, can be read at RioRealblog’s post here.

For further information about the toolkit itself, visit the Favelas@LSE blog, and to see the toolkit itself, click here.

Additionally, to read an interview from Sandra about the event, please click here (In Portuguese).