Agribusiness Challenges and Opportunities for the United States and Cuba, Symposium

The symposium, “Agribusiness Challenges and Opportunities for the United States and Cuba” took place Monday, July 18 at AU’s Washington College of Law. This one-day symposium featured Cuban and US experts from a broad array of trade-related specialties. It provided a unique learning opportunity for those in business or government who are interested in future US-Cuba commerce, investment, and finance policy. 

Center for Latin American Studies Annual Conference, Cuba and the United States in the 21st Century

The UF Center for Latin American Studies 66th Annual Conference took place from March 30 - April 1, 2017. The conference, Cuba and the United States in the 21st Century, featured presentations from diverse perspectives relating to the relations between Cuba and the United States. Conference panelists represented a wide array of expertise, including academics working in agriculture, business, trade, natural resources and the environment, economics, the arts, humanities, and the social sciences.

View the conference program!

Workshop on Academic Engagement with Cuba

UF's Center for Latin American Studies, Cuba Program, International Center, IFAS, and Warrington College of Business hosted a workshop on Academic Engagement with Cuba on Tuesday, September 29, 2015, from 3-5 pm in the Bryan Hall Auditorium. Center Director Philip Williams moderated the workshop, and panelists included: Dr. Fred Royce, Academic Manager, UF-University of Havana Cooperative Agreement; Dr. Lillian Guerra, Waldo W. Neikirk Professor of Cuban and Caribbean History; Bill Messina, Agricultural Economist, Department of Food and Resource Economics; and Dr. Tom Frazer, Director, School of Natural Resources and Environment.

A video of the workshop is available here.

Artist and writer Coco Fusco joins UF’s School of Art + Art History

The University of Florida College of the Arts is pleased to announce that interdisciplinary artist and writer Coco Fusco will join the faculty of the School of Art + Art History as a professor and Andrew Banks Family Endowed Chair in January 2016. Fusco has performed, lectured, exhibited and curated around the world for nearly three decades. Her work explores the politics of gender, race, war, and identity. Working in a variety of formats, she has staged multimedia productions incorporating large-scale projections, closed-circuit television, web-based live streaming performances with audience interaction, as well as performances at cultural events that actively engage with visitors.

“This position offers me a wonderful opportunity to join a vibrant intellectual and creative community and to advance my own research on contemporary Cuban culture,” said Fusco.

Her new book, “Dangerous Moves: Performance and Politics in Cuba,” will be published in October 2015 by Tate Publications in London.

16th Annual Conference on Legal & Policy Issues in the Americas
Monday, May 11, 2015
University of Florida Levin College of Law

Cuba was the focus of the 16th annual Conference on Legal & Policy Issues in the Americas on May 11, at the University of Florida Levin College of Law. The conference was sponsored by the Center for Governmental Responsibility (CGR) and UF's Center for Latin American Studies.

Conference presenters included a variety of legal scholars, practitioners, and government officials, and included Julia Sweig, formerly the Nelson and David Rockefeller Senior Fellow for Latin American Studies and Director for Latin American Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations; Stephen Zack, past president, American Bar Association; Antonio Zamora, Miami attorney; John Caulfield, former Chief of Mission of the U.S. Interests Section to Cuba; and José R. Cabanas, Chief of the Cuban Interest Section, Washington, DC.

In addition to discussing current issues regarding Cuba-US relations, the conference featured presentations about UF activities in Cuba, including work of the Center for Latin American Studies and the Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS). Specific panels examined issues in the areas of Legal Education, Environment and Agriculture, and Trade and Investment. "As Cuba continues to be a major topic for discussion in the United States and especially in Florida, we felt it was time to become acquainted with the issues and activities involved," said Jon Mills, CGR Director and law school Dean Emeritus." The Center for Governmental Responsibility plans to hold its 2016 conference in Havana, hosted by the University of Havana Faculty of Law.

Cuba Visitors to the University of Florida

In April 2015 the UF Cuba Program hosted the visit of Dr. Dayma Echevarría, a sociologist with the Center for the Study of the Cuban Economy, courtesy of the Cuba Program at Columbia’s Institute for Latin American Studies, where she was spending two months as a Visiting Scholar. She presented a seminar at the Center for Latin American Studies on “The New Cuban Economic Model and Labor Policy:  Challenges for Gender and Social Equity.” 

Three scientists from Cuba’s Instituto de Investigaciones de la Caña de Azúcar  (Sugar Cane Research Institute - INICA), Dr. Guillermo Galvez, Dr. Ricardo Acevedo, and Dr. Ignacio Santana visited UF in January 2015. During their two weeks in Florida, they met with scientists at the Gainesville campus, the UF Everglades Research and Education Center and the USDA-ARS Sugarcane Field Station at Canal Point. They also met with research, production and management personnel at the Florida Crystals Corporation, including a tour of the Osceola Sugar Mill at Pahokee.

Through the Fundación Nuñez Jiménez and the Casa Fernando Ortiz, we have brought many historians of Cuba to UF, including in 2013, Dr. Reinaldo Funes, Cuba’s only specialist of environmental history and Oilda Hevia, a historian of slavery and black history in the colonial period. Dr. Ricardo Quiza, a cultural historian, and Dr. Abel Sierra, Cuba’s only specialist of the history of homosexuality, visited in 2014. Dr. Eduardo Torres-Cuevas, Director of the Biblioteca Nacional José Martí, who is also the Director of the Casa de Altos Estudios Fernando Ortíz at UH has visited UF several times since 2011.

We have also hosted the visit of Jorge Macle, probably Cuba’s most important archivist, based at Cuba’s National Archive, and its former Vice Director of Research. Mr. Macle is also a longstanding member of Cuba’s national commission on monuments and historical legacies as well as a principal author of its 2001 landmark law allowing for the preservation and declassification of documents produced by the revolutionary government for the future use of researchers. By invitation of the UF Libraries, Mr. Macle will return to UF in summer 2015 in order to conduct seminars for UF librarians on the resources in Cuban archives and libraries.

Drs. Lazaro Peña Castellanos, Anicia García Álvarez, and Armando Nova Gonzalez deliver seminar at the U.S. Department Agriculture South Building

In May 2013, the UF/IFAS research initiative on Cuban agriculture was able to arrange for University of Havana collaborators Drs. Lazaro Peña Castellanos, Anicia García Álvarez, and Armando Nova Gonzalez to give an unprecedented seminar at the U.S. Department Agriculture South Building (the main USDA facility) in Washington, DC, describing the progress that is being made and the constraints that are being faced as Cuba’s agricultural sector attempts to implement the more market-oriented policies adopted at the Cuban government’s 6th Party Congress in April of 2011. This seminar attracted a standing-room-only crowd that included high-level administrators in the USDA Foreign Agricultural Service.

Dr. Juan Llanes-Regueiro and Dr. Marta Rosa Muñoz Campos Visit the University of Florida

In May 2011 Dr. Juan Llanes-Regueiro, Director of the UH Centro de Estudios Ambientales (Center for Environmental Studies) and Dr. Marta Rosa Muñoz Campos of FLACSO-Cuba spent 10 days at UF and attended the Southeast Climate Consortium meetings in Orlando. In December 2011, we hosted Dr. Jorge Angulo (director), Anmari Alvarez and Patricia Gonzalez, from the Centro de Investigaciones Marinas (Center for Marine Research) at the University of Havana.