Jorge Domínguez, a leading Latin American scholar at Harvard University, talks at The Centre for International Governance Innovation (CIGI) on March 26, as part of the International Governance Speakers Series. Entitled Bringing Cuba back into the Inter-American System: Problems and Prospects, Dr. Domínguez's talk examines the on-going efforts of many countries in the Western hemisphere to engage Cuba more constructively. Cuba was suspended from the Organization of American States (OAS) in 1962 because of its non-democratic political system. In 2009, the OAS voted to conditionally lift Cuba's suspension, but the country declined to rejoin. In recent years, Latin American and Caribbean countries have increasingly asserted their independence from North American policies. They most recently demonstrated their autonomy by sidestepping the OAS and creating a new regional alliance called the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States, which excludes the United States and Canada. Cuban President Raúl Castro welcomed the newly minted alternative to the OAS, describing the new bloc as a "historic move toward the constitution of a purely Latin American and Caribbean regional organization." Although the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States' role hasn't been clearly defined, it is likely to have implications for Canada and the United States, as well as the wider Inter-American system. Dr. Domínguez is the Antonio Madero Professor of Mexican and Latin American Politics and Economics in the Department of Government at the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs at Harvard University, where he researches domestic and international politics of Latin American countries. He is the author of numerous books, among them The Cuban Economy at the Start of the Twenty-First Century and To Make a World Safe for Revolution: Cuba's Foreign Policy. He was series editor for the Peabody Award-winning Public Broadcasting System television series Crisis in Central America.
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