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2015 - 16 Events

Centre of Latin American Studies


New academic mobility programme established between Cambridge and the Universidad de las Américas, Puebla​

The University of Cambridge is enhancing its links with Mexican higher education institutions by signing an agreement with the Universidad de las Américas Puebla (UDLAP) for the establishment of an academic mobility programme in the arts, humanities and social sciences.

The purpose of the agreement, which is valid for five years in the first instance, is to create an annual Visiting Fellowship. The Cambridge-UDLAP Visiting Fellowship will allow two scholars from Cambridge and two scholars from UDLAP to spend between four and eight weeks at the partner institution. Supported by the UDLAP Foundation, it will serve to strengthen academic links and enhance the potential for research collaboration between the two universities.

First call for applications (deadline 1 March 2016)

This is the first agreement of its kind between the University of Cambridge and a Latin American higher education institution. The agreement was signed at the end of 2015, officially designated as the “Year of Mexico in the UK” and “Year of the UK in Mexico” as a way of strengthening ties and enhancing mutual understanding between both countries.

UDLAP was founded in 1940 as a private university, and is consistently ranked among the top Mexican universities. Its president, Luis Ernesto Derbez, was Mexico’s Secretary of Foreign Affairs (2003-2006) and, before that, the country’s Secretary of the Economy (2000-2002). The city of Puebla, where the university is located, is less than 70 miles from Mexico City. It was founded in 1531 and is world-known for its colonial architecture. It was selected as one of UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites in 1987.

The Cambridge-UDLAP Visiting Fellowship will be open to full-time research staff at both institutions in all areas of the arts, humanities and social sciences. In Cambridge, it will be managed by the Centre of Latin American Studies (CLAS), an interdisciplinary research and postgraduate teaching centre which acts as a hub for research on Latin America across the whole university.

Speaking after the signature of the agreement, Dr Joanna Page, Director of CLAS said: “The Cambridge-UDLAP Visiting Fellowship will help to strengthen the University of Cambridge’s expertise in the field of Mexican arts, humanities and social sciences. This is an exciting opportunity for researchers here to spend time in Mexico, consulting libraries and archives, collecting data, and exchanging ideas with experts in relevant fields. By welcoming scholars from UDLAP at Cambridge, we also hope to establish much closer links with one of Mexico’s most dynamic universities, and to lay the groundwork for mutually beneficial collaborations. Visiting Fellows from UDLAP will join the strong, interdisciplinary research community based at the Centre and I have no doubt that their visits will lead to many interesting conversations and open up opportunities for future research.”

On behalf of UDLAP, Chancellor Dr Luis Ernesto Derbez, added: “In the knowledge society, the future will be for those who dare to innovate, to think differently, and to believe in the transformational power of ideas. This agreement between UDLAP and Cambridge brings that future closer by offering an extraordinary opportunity for scholars at both institutions to know our countries and cultures better, and to develop cutting-edge research on the arts, humanities and social sciences. The current challenge, for our universities, is to engage in collaboration with the objective of producing original knowledge that could not have been created without this partnership. Cambridge scholars will find a vibrant community of students and faculty at UDLAP, while our researchers will surely take advantage of staying at one of the most prestigious universities in the world. We hope this will be the first step in a long and successful academic relationship.”