Future of U.S.-Latin America Relations

April 20, 2011 - 4:00 pm

Sergio Bitar, Former Minister, Chile
Former Minister Bitar will discuss the future of US-Latin America relations in the light of President Barack Obama’s recent visit to Latin America in March, 2011. His talk will focus on issues about democratization, progressive growth strategies in the context of globalization, Andean and South American dynamics, the changing role of China, and opportunities and challenges in US-Latin American cooperation.

Mauricio Font, Bildner Center for Western Hemisphere Studies, CUNY

Sergio Bitar is a leading Chilean politician and economist. He played a distinguished role as Minister of Public Works (2008-2010) in the Michelle Bachelet government, served as Minister of Education in 2003-2005 during the presidency of Ricardo Lagos, and as Minister of Mining during Salvador Allende’s government. He is currently a Senior Visiting Fellow at the Inter-American Dialogue in Washington, D.C.He has published many essays and more than a dozen books, including Chile: Una Propuesta Progresista (Planeta, 2009); Cita con la Historia (2007), Educación, Nuestra Riqueza (El Mercurio Aguilar, 2007), Dawson, Isla 10 (10 editions), Chile 1970-1973: Asumir la historia para construir el futuro (Pehuén, 1995). Dawson, Isla 10, a reflection on his experiences as political prisoner in Dawson island during the 1973-74 military regime and a classic of the Chilean testimonial literature, was taken to the big screen in 2009 by film director Miguel Littín. In 1986, he published La caída de Allende y la huelga del Teniente (Ornitorrinco) as well as Chile: Experiment in Democracy (Institute for the Study of Human Issues). Sergio Bitar’s Chile, Bolivia y Perú: un futuro en común (Santillana, forthcoming) has just been sent to press. Bitar is engaged in several academic projects and institutions, non-governmental organizations, and international forums. He is currently working on proposals for the future of Chile on behalf of the Concertación, the progressive political coalition that governed Chile during the last two decades (1990-2010) and his party (Party for Democracy, PPD).