Brazil’s Balancing Act: Reconciling the Demands of Economic Development, Environmental Protection, and Indigenous Rights

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Time: 2:00 – 5:00 pm
Location: International Lounge, Usdan

Experts working in diverse fields – Brazilincluding economic development, international business, environmental protection, international law, and human and indigenous rights – will examine the intersecting interests and responsibilities of those working in sometimes conflicting sectors. The symposium will provide a forum for dialogue about how Brazil might best fulfill its local, national, and international obligations.

Panelists include Mr. Fernando Ribeiro Delgado, Lecturer, Harvard Law School; Professor Cristina Espinosa, The Heller School, Brandeis University; Dr. Daniel Luiz Gleizer, Vice President, Banco Itau BBA, Sao Paulo; Dr. Moises Lino e Silva, Lecturer, International and Global Studies and Anthropology, Brandeis University; and Dr. Biorn Maybury-Lewis, Executive Director, Cambridge Institute for Brazilian Studies (CIBS), Institute for International Urban Development, and University of Massachusetts, Boston. The event will be moderated by Dean Bruce Magid of the Brandeis International Business School.

Click here for panelists’ bios and photos, resources, and an agenda for the day.

This event is cosponsored by the Brandeis International Business School’s Perlmutter Institute for Global Business Leadership and the Ethics Center, and is free and open to the public.

6 Replies to “Brazil’s Balancing Act: Reconciling the Demands of Economic Development, Environmental Protection, and Indigenous Rights”

  1. I could only stay until 3:30, but I really enjoyed the speeches by all of the panelists, they were all very interesting, especially because we could see different perspectives on ideas of the development on Brazil. I fount that the Belo Monte topic was particularly interesting because it was a concrete example of how the indigenous population was being devastated in this particular area, and how the government (Dilma’s especially) basically refused to go through the steps that Delgado talked about. It is interesting to analyze the problem from the different ways, for example a human rights advocate would argue that the land is being taken away from the indigenous people unjustly, and on the other hand, an economist or financial expert might argue that people are being moved away from their land in order to benefit the entire country in the long run. Issues like the Belo Monte Dam are complicated because there are many sides to the issue, and none of them can be 100% correct.

  2. I entered this event knowing little about Brazil and its current place in our world today. I left the event with some great knowledge about Brazil and the culture there. The major point of the presentation that struck me was addressed by Dr. Espinosa in that the indigenous people in Brazil will integrate into the globalizing society but they do not want to assimilate into this unknown and booming society that is being recognized all over the world. I understand that people want to remain close to their culture but I was very surprised to hear this said because I would imagine that since the nation is on a rise, many people would want to be apart of it. However, this is not the case in Brazil. Another member of the panel said that a middle ground must be reached between the indigenous people and the bustling society. There needs to be a relationship between the two because that will make the country more cohesive and united. I found this presentation to be very helpful in my studies of IGS here at Brandeis and I am very happy to have attended.

  3. This event is great! I enjoyed the five presentations a lot. Starting with Dr. Biorn Maybury-Lewis, he points out four significant points. 1.Concept of development: development inescapable. After post world two, improvement for health, education, infrastructure. Brazil is driving toward religious request for modernity. However, modernization development is all around the world, not just in Brazil. Brazil is an export economy. It is important to realize that Brazil remains the most unequal countries in the country. 2.What can the gov’t do to expand the economy and readdress further the developmental imbalance? Gov’t needs find way to better listen to the public; to find a way to include the whole population; budget is very important; 3.Indigenous ppl control largely the considerable lands. We should focus on the question of how development? 4. THERE IS NO REASON FOR ONE GROUP TO OVERRUN THE OTHER. Dr. Daniel focuses on Brazil economic development. (Brazil is sixth largest economy is the world, why hyperinflation happen in Brazil).
    Brazil still faces some challenges today. The country has the very potential to grow and result in elimination of poverty. One important issues (for the speaker ) is low saving rate. The saving rate is not enough to support the high growth rate. The rate is not reaching Chinese economy. It’s a country with no tradition of saving. It’s hard to persuade those people not to consume so much and save. Dr. Moises Lino e Silva starts with a very attractive point that in Brazil, everyone is indigenous, except others are not. Who is indigenous? Who wanna be considered indigenous? Anthologists are not here to decide who should be considered indigenous or not. PPL themselves should be considered. Furthermore, access to good quality should not be the privilege to the few people. Mr. Fernando Deigado focuses on human rights law that relates to Brazil. There are many ppl can be threaten. When he introduces the safeguards, he mentions free and informed. The idea behind being informed is like globalization is not weaken religion and may enforce the religion. People are given enough information to make own decisions. Unfortunately, I left right after the presentation for another class, but the one and half hour presentation gave me a great insight on Brazil.

  4. During Brazil’s Balancing Act event, Dean Magid brought up the question of who should control the Amazon River. In response to this question, Dr. Biorn Maybury-Lewis stated that Brazil has always had a desire to take over the forces of the Amazon River but their control of it has always been a long-term problem. Other countries are skeptical of how Brazilians are dealing with trade on the river and how they are preserving the river. People are questioning Brazil’s sovereignty because they appear to not be able to manage the Amazon efficiently. Dr. Maybury-Lewis points out that if this same criticism was applied to the United States, then the United States should relinquish our own sovereignty too and be ruled under an international organization. I agree with Dr. Maybury-Lewis’s logic; all countries should let the Brazilians control the Amazon River and give Brazilian sovereignty a chance to develop in the country. We should let the Brazilians decide what role they play in the global economy and let them figure out their economic future based on the decisions that they make, absence of international intervention. This path that Brazil should embark on is similar to that of India. When India became a democracy, the government enacted legislations to build up its economy to be what it is today.

  5. I found this event to be extremely fascinating- I really enjoyed hearing each of the panelists speak, and appreciated how we got the chance to hear different perspectives. I was intrigued by Dr. Biorn Maybury-Lewis’ solution to Brazil’s problem of balancing the need to protect the environment while also building the economy. Dr. Maybury-Lewis proposed that the government better listen to the public, include the population in development planning, build on workers’ party budgeting initiatives, and continue with welfare success. He argued that these would be tough to implement, but also necessary. These steps would ultimately lead to a more democratic country, which he argued was a good thing. This led me to reflect on Fukuyama’s piece- does democracy represent the end of the world? Is that the supreme form of government? Does a democracy truly solve a nation’s issues? I was also fascinated by Dr. Moises Lino e Silva’s assertion that the indigenous should be treated better. It is interesting how the indigenous groups tie into the issue of protecting the environment while also growing the economy. Overall, this was an extremely informative event.

  6. When I went to this Brazil event, I knew absolutely nothing about the country and its culture. When I heard all the speakers and processed the things that they were talking about, I learned so much about Brazil. Brazil has the sixth largest economy in the world. Another key point that i learned is that the native people want to be a part of and integrated in Brazilian society, but don’t want to be a part of the greater globalized society. It would be obvious to think that Brazil wants to be a part of the continuing globalized society base on their culture and economic prowess but for some reason they do not want to reach out to the wider society outside of Brazil even though there would be numerous opportunities to explore and help their country develop. Another thing that I found peculiar was the fact that one panelist said that the native people and the growing society in Brazil are not particularly cohesive and together. This made me question how are they not coming together even as they are constantly growing as a developing country. I think they need more time to develop their own united culture and society and that way they can be more involved in global affairs. I really enjoyed this event particularly because it was my first experience leraning about Brazil.

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