Professor Joe Foweraker
I am the current Professor of Latin American Politics and a Fellow of St. Antony’s College. Since coming to Oxford six years ago I have served first as director of the Latin American Centre and subsequently as head of the School of Interdisciplinary Studies. Previously I was Professor of Government at the University of Essex for many years as well as the Executive Director of the European Consortium for Political Research from 1999-2003. At different moments I have also been a visiting professor at the universities of Pará (Brazil), Gainesville (Florida), and Boulder (Colorado); and a visiting research fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars (Washington DC) and the Center for US-Mexican Studies (UC San Diego).
In a past life I spent many years of fieldwork in Brazil, Spain and Mexico, publishing monographs on these three countries with Cambridge University Press in 1981, 1989 and 1993. There were also many publications on social mobilization and citizenship rights in Latin America, including books with Pluto Press (1995) and Oxford University Press (1997). More recent years have been dedicated mainly to comparative research on democracy, leading to a series of articles on the quality of democratic government, an edited Encyclopedia of Democratic Thought (Routledge 2001), and a co-authored textbook on Governing Latin America (Polity 2003). My current research deploys classical democratic theory to analyse the nature of the contemporary political systems of Latin America.
There are many good reasons why the University of Oxford is such a good place to work and study, including the sterling quality of its academic staff, its abundance of resources, and the beauty of the built environment. But above all this University offers a rare combination of deep intellectual tradition and a free spirit of enquiry and debate, so creating an institutional context that is both conservative – in the best sense – and libertarian. It is a privilege to belong to this community of scholars.
Within Oxford the Latin American Centre holds a special place in my affections. I first came here in 1969 as a student on the then B.Phil (now M.Phil) degree in Latin American Studies, and went on to study for the D.Phil. I stayed in close touch with the Centre – and with my D.Phil supervisor Alan Angell – over the years, before acting as external examiner for the Centre in the 1990s. In the soon-to-be-fifty years since its foundation the Centre has created its own traditions; but in recent years it has reformed the delivery of its teaching programmes, extended its research agenda, and recruited a stellar group of outstanding scholars to create what is now the leading centre for Latin American studies in Europe.
Telephone: +44 (0)1865 274488