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Latin America: contested territories

Learn more about today’s Latin American history, reality, opportunities and challenges from a multidisciplinary approach

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CIVIS focus area
Society, culture, heritage
Open to
  • Bachelor's
  • Master's
  • PhD
Field of studies
  • Social Science and humanities
  • Blended Intensive Programmes (BIP)
Course dates
3 May - 17 July 2024

The course introduces participants to Latin America studies from a geopolitical, cultural, economic and political perspective.The main goal of the BIP is that participants gain full insight into today’s Latin American reality, opportunities and challenges. Students will engage in different activities that promote a multicultural and multidisciplinary approach to the topics introduced in the BIP. Finally, students, in groups of three, will elaborate a case study from a certain challenges among those that will be presented in the classes and that will serve for students to learn and reflect on a particular topic and, eventually, allow them to formulate proposals for solving those challenges. For example, environmental issues, socio-economic inequalities, populist drifts, problems of megacities and territory, cultural diversity, or integration.

Academics from Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens and Sapienza Università di Roma, will collaborate in both components, along with academics and professionals from Latin America.

Main topics addressed

During the course participants will collect knowledge about the following topics:

  • Historical Evolution and Integration in Latin America
  • Language and culture: spaces and networks
  • Indigenous peoples and globalization
  • Transnational intellectual networks
  • Populisms
  • Politics and political organizations in the region
  • Political thought for the 21st century
  • Commodities, Trade, Financial flows and external imbalances
  • The increasing influence of China and Russia in the region

Learning outcomes

The expected learning outcomes are the following:

  • Brief, professional presentations (5 min.) 
  • Structured class debates
  • Intercultural networking
  • Teamworking (write and present a short case study of some relevant aspects- to be proposed by the student and discussed with the supervisors) on the Region
  • Critical thinking
  • Scientific writing
  • Pitch strategies
  • Leadership
Dates: 3 May - 5 July 2024 Language: English, Spanish (C1)
Location: Madrid, Spain ECTS: 3*
Format: Blended Workload: 100 hours

*Recognition of ECTS depends on your home university. 

Physical mobility

The physical mobility part will be running from 1 to 5 July 2024 in Madrid.

The physical component of the program will merge as follows:

June 30, 2024

  • Welcome event in Madrid (optional) (20:00 CET)

July 1, 2024

  • Introduction to the Course (Félix-Fernando Muñoz) (15:00 CET)
  • Conference: América, un continente en construcción: la búsqueda de su lugar en la tierra (Jesús Bustamante) (15:30-16:30 CET)
  • Contemporary Populism in South America (Gilberto Aranda) (17:00-18:30 CET)
  • Coffee break
  • The French presence in Latin America: History and culture (Irini Apostolou) (19:00-20:30 CET)
  • Welcome to UAM (informal dinner)

July 2, 2024

  • Title to be confirmed (Giovanni Ruocco) (15:30-17:00 CET)
  • Coffee break
  • Trade Flows and External Imbalances (Jorge Turmo) (17:30-19:00 CET)

July 3, 2024

  • The growing influence of China in Latin America (Angel Rodríguez García Brazales) (15:30-17:00 CET)
  • Coffee break
  • Indigenous peoples and international law (Mirian Galante) (17:30-19:00 CET)

July 4, 2024

  • Make them similar or harmless. International (in)stability and its consequences on the US strategic approach (Part II) (Gabriele Natalizia) (15:30-17:00 CET)
  • Coffee break
  • Politics and language: spaces and networks (Laura Mariottini) (17:30-19:00 CET)

July 5, 2024 (Casa de Velázquez)

  • Pitch contest (Nadia Fernández de Pinedo) (15:30-17:00 CET)
  • Coffee break
  • Wrap-up (Nadia Fernández de Pinedo and Félix-Fernando Muñoz) (17:30-19:00 CET)
  • BIP farewell dinner (21:30 CET)

July 6, 2024

  • Guided tour: Museo de América, Madrid (optional) (10:00-12:00 CET)

Virtual part

The virtual part will be running from 3 May to 17 July 2024.

The first component of the course is online. Analysis and discussion materials (videos, documents, texts, podcasts, databases, etc..) and guidelines will be provided to facilitate group interactions, cohesion and debates during the sessions.

Schedule of the course:

May 3, 2024

  • (16:00 - 17:00 CET) Introduction to the BIP (Félix-Fernando Muñoz)

May 10, 2024

  • (15:00 - 16:30 CET) Session 1: Geopolitics of Latin America (Ángel Rodríguez García Brazales)
  • (16:45 - 18:15 CET) Teamwork and discussion

May 17, 2024

  • (15:00 - 16:30 CET) Session 2: Indigenous peoples and current challenges (Manuel Burón)
  • (16:45 - 18:15 CET) Teamwork and discussion

May 24, 2024

  • (15:00 - 16:30 CET) Teamwork and discussion
  • (16:45 - 18:15 CET) Session 3: Financial Inclusion and financial vulnerability in Latin America-The Gender Gap (María José Roa García)

May 31, 2024

  • (15:00 - 16:30 CET) Session 4: Make them similar or harmless. International (in)stability and its consequences on the US strategic approach (Part I) (Gabriele Natalizia)
  • (16:45 - 18:15 CET) Teamwork and discussion

June 2, 2024

  • (15:00 - 16:30 CET) Session 2b: "Russkiye Medvedi": The Russians and Latin America (An Anthropological-Historical Approach) (Jesús Gil Fuensanta)
  • (16:45 - 18:15 CET) Teamwork and discussion

June 7, 2024

  • (15:00 - 16:30 CET) Session 5: Decolonizing the world. Critical perspectives in Latin America for global politics of the 21st century (Giovanni Ruocco)
  • (16:45 - 18:15 CET) Teamwork and discussion

June 14, 2024

  • (15:00 - 16:30 CET) Session 6: Extractivism in Latin America: a long-term Perspective (David Pretel)
  • (16:45 - 18:15 CET) Teamwork and discussion

July 17, 2024

  • (12:00 - 14:00 CET) Evaluation and follow-up (Félix-Fernando Muñoz & Nadia Fernández de Pinedo) 


This course is open to Bachelor's, Master's and PhD students at CIVIS member universities enrolled in the following fields of study: Economics, History, Literature, Political Science, Law, Psychology, or any other fields related. 

A minimum B2/C1 level in English and Spanish are also compulsory.

NB: Visiting Students - Erasmus Funding Eligibility

To be eligible for your selected CIVIS programme, you must be a fully enrolled student at your CIVIS home university at the time you will be undertaking the programme. Click here to learn more about the eligibility criteria.

Application process

Interested students should apply by filling in the online application form by 7 November 2023. 

Students will be selected based on the following criteria:

  • CV (50%)
  • Letter of intent (30%)
  • Languages level- according to CEFR (20%)

Apply here


Students will be evaluated according to the criteria below:

  • Participation in the online discussion and exercises (Individual work recorded in the e-portfolios 30%)
  • Brief- 10 minute presentation of a case study (Teamwork 20%)
  • Final essay: a case study prepared within the assigned work team (Teamwork 50%)

Blended Intensive Programme

This CIVIS course is a Blended Intensive Programme (BIP): a new format of Erasmus+ mobility which combines online teaching with a short trip to another campus to learn alongside students and professors across Europe. Click here to learn more about CIVIS BIPs.

GDPR Consent

The CIVIS alliance and its member universities will treat the information you provide with respect. Please refer to our privacy policy for more information on our privacy practices. By applying to this course you agree that we may process your information in accordance with these terms.

Irini Apostolou, Full Professor (National and Kapodistrian University of Athens)

Marco Cilento Associate Professor (Sapienza Università di Roma)

Laura Mariottini, Associate Professor (Sapienza Università di Roma)

David Pretel, Senior Lecturer (Universidad Autónoma de Madrid)

Giovanni Ruocco, Associate Professor (Sapienza Università di Roma)

Angel Rodríguez García-Brazales, Associate Professor (Universidad Autónoma de Madrid)

Jesús Gil Fuensanta (School of Economic Intelligence and independent researcher)

Mirian Galante, Senior Lecturer (Universidad Autónoma de Madrid)

Manuel Burón, Lecturer (Universidad Autónoma de Madrid)

Gilberto C. Aranda, Associate Professor (University of Chile)

Jorge Turmo, Associate Professor (Universidad Autónoma de Madrid)

Nadia Fernández de Pinedo, Associate Professor (Universidad Autónoma de Madrid)

Félix-Fernando Muñoz Pérez, Associate Professor (Universidad Autónoma de Madrid)