Thematic Initiatives

DRCLAS is dedicated to raising awareness about global themes currently relevant to issues in Latin America through various center-wide Thematic Initatives.

Paths Toward Recovery

image of rocks and a body of water

In most of Latin America and the Caribbean, the end of the coronavirus pandemic “remains a distant future,” as the Pan American Health Organization put it this summer. Nevertheless, planning and thinking about the paths to recovery must be done now to avoid a freefall. The DRCLAS programmatic theme of “Paths to Recovery” will bring together academics and practitioners to study emerging and possible strategies for recovery in areas that Covid-19 has hit the hardest, including economies, public health, education, labor, housing, social welfare, and democracy. What are emerging as best practices and early pitfalls as Latin Americans pursue recovery in a global context? How can Latin America build back better?


image of 4 people watching a sunset

With a growing number of activities in and around the Harvard community to study and celebrate Latinx communities and themes, DRCLAS seeks to serve as a resource to help spread information about these important initiatives. Some events are co-sponsored by DRCLAS as part of our Latinx Initiative while others are organized by groups affiliated with the university. 

Climate Change

Climate change is one of the most important long-term threats for the future of our societies. Solutions are complex, depending not only on engineering and policy, but also on imagination and public will towards alternative forms of inhabiting the planet.

Brazilian savannah

Amazonia & our Planetary Futures

On May 7-8, 2019, DRCLAS hosted a symposium that discussed the past, present and future of Amazonia. Topics included deforestation trends and their ties to climate and health; moving towards a viable future, including the importance and role of indigenous peoples; and ongoing and emerging initiatives towards river-flowing, rainforest-based economies across Amazonia.