Category Archives: Developing Latin America
I wanted to share this with you in a special post. In 2015 we had the desire of making Latin America’s issues more present in one of the most important and long-lasting international Library and Information Science journals: Information Development. This regular series, supported by its editor and colleagues in the editorial board just turned five years with its 24th article, published yesterday. I want to thank all readers and my coauthors (alphabetical): Dominique Babini, Mtro Cortés, Rene-Manuel Delgado, Iram Evangelista, Thelma García, Fidel Gonzalez-Quiñones, Renny Granda, Jesus Lau, Basilio A. Martínez-Villa, Eduardo Medina Yllescas, Erbey Mendoza Negrete, Saul M Equihua, Maria Pinto, Marie Romero Waldon, José R. Romo, Gloria Ruiz, Javier Tarango, Myrna Li & Alejandro Uribe Tirado. Special thanks to IDV’s editor Stephen Parker, as well as Paul Sturges and Ian Johnson who supported this idea from the start. Cheers to all of you!
You can check Developing Latin America at http://bit.ly/DLA15-19 and half of the articles are in open access (E-LIS/SSRN), soon I’ll catch up adding them all!
We present the experience of Chihuahua’s reading and conversation clubs, as a citizen initiative that emerged to reconquer the city spaces that were seized by violence, as well as the role of the Tips, Talks and Topics radio show.
Abstract: This article presents the generation of reading and conversation clubs in Chihuahua city (Mexico), which emerged from spontaneous initiatives by citizens, as a response to one of the most violent periods faced in the city. This report was developed with information gathered during interviews with members of reading and conversation clubs about their experiences, at the Universidad Autónoma de Chihuahua’s radio station (Radio University), in the ‘Tips, Talks and Topics’ weekly show.
Recomended reference: Machin-Mastromatteo, J. D., & Coughanour, G. L. R. (2019). The rise of reading and conversation clubs during Chihuahua’s violent times. Information Development, 35(3), 503–506. https://doi.org/10.1177/0266666919855147
Abstract: This article presents certain Latin American traits from the works of four prestigious and contemporary Latin American writers: Gioconda Belli, Gonzalo Rojas, Augusto Monterroso y Juan José Arreola. The traits discussed include politics, the religious cult, the messianic vision, family, couples and the father figure. We argue that it is very important for people to understand their own culture and identity, to explore and not abandon the conversations about their countries’ literary works, as they reflect, report and critique them.
Recomended reference: Evangelista-Ávila, I. I., Mendoza, E., & Machin-Mastromatteo, J. D. (2019). What is Latin American? Literary perspectives for reflecting on our identity. Information Development, 35(2), 342–346. https://doi.org/10.1177/0266666919828979
Latin American academic and research Think Tanks: Characterization of a model and its presence in the region
Our second article of the year #WeAreOnFire, where we perform a regional diagnostic of the Latin American institutions that can be considered as academic and research think tanks.
Abstract: This article presents a general overview of the Think Tank model, including its conceptualization and main types. Then, it focuses on the academic and research Think Tanks that are located in Latin America, by identifying the existing ones per country, presenting their tendencies and by analyzing them from the perspective of their organizational, financial, informational, educational, technical, human capital and knowledge generation resources. This contribution also identifies Latin American academic and research Think Tanks’ competitive advantages and their differences from traditional educational models.
Recomended reference: Tarango, J., Delgado, R., & Machin-Mastromatteo, J.D. (2019). Latin American academic and research Think Tanks: Characterization of a model and its presence in the region. Information Development, 35(1), 165–170.
Recovering troubled cities through public spaces and libraries: The Caracas Metropolitan Strategic Plan 2020
Together with my fellow contryman, Renny Granda, public libraries’ own knight, we published the third part of the Caracas Trilogy (see first part and second part), where we invite you to reflect upon the question: could public spaces and libraries help us reducing violence in Latin American cities?
Abstract: The Caracas Metropolitan Strategic Plan 2020 (CMSP2020) is an instance of urban and environmental planning that seeks to construct a collective ‘city pact’ for Caracas, currently among the most troubled and violent cities in Latin America. Its main idea is to recover the city through the rescue of its public spaces, by centering on six strategic axes for transforming Caracas: accessibility and mobility; public safety, public spaces and housing improvement; environmental sustainability; productivity and entrepreneurship; governability; and the development of a constructive and responsible citizenship. This model, partly inspired by Medellin’s Library Parks, may be useful for other large cities in the region that suffer similar socio-political fractures, as well as accessibility, mobility, environmental, productive, governance and safety issues.
Open Access version (Coming soon!)
Recommended reference: Granda, R., and Machin-Mastromatteo, J. D. (2018). Recovering troubled cities through public spaces and libraries: The Caracas Metropolitan Strategic Plan 2020. Information Development, 34(1), 103–107. http://doi.org/10.1177/0266666917741069
Latin American triple-A journals 1: A quality roadmap from the quality indicators and journals’ presence in Web of Science and Scopus
The new Developing Latin America, co-authored with Javier Tarango and Eduardo Medina-Yllescas is out. In this issue, we analyze the current presence of Latin American journals in Web of Science and Scopus, as the first part of a quality roadmap intended to strengthen regional publications, especially those that have started as institutional publications. Dedicated to the loving memory of Cristobal Salvador Gómez Contreras (1992-2017).
Abstract: The current presence of Latin American journals in Web of Science and Scopus is analyzed, as the first part of a quality roadmap intended to strengthen regional publications, especially those that have started as institutional publications. The next issue will study the quality requirements and journals’ presence in other recognized indexes and platforms such as Scimago Journal and Country Rank, the Directory of Open Access Journals, Latindex, SciELO, and RedALyC.
Recommended reference: Machin-Mastromatteo, J. D., Tarango, J., and Medina-Yllescas, E. (2017). Latin American triple-A journals 1: A quality roadmap from the quality indicators and journals’ presence in Web of Science and Scopus. Information Development, 33(4), 436-441. http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0266666917718138
Subordinated Complacency, Ferocious Rivalry, or Equitable Work: On the Independence and Separation of State Powers
Now in #OpenAccess, 2017’s ‘On the Independence and Separation of State Powers’, written with Basilio A. Martínez-Villa. Original English version: https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=3466595
Abstract: This article presents three deviations from the Separation of Powers Principle (trias politica) as they have taken place in Mexico and Venezuela: the increment in the amount of state powers, the subordination of powers to the agenda of a unique political tendency with the subsequent nullification of the power that is acting in an independent way, and the creation of constitutional autonomous institutes or entities. It suggests that governments can become complex self-referential systems that avoid public consultation of political decisions and the free formation of citizens’ informed and educated opinions that are much needed for a country’s development in a democracy.
Suggested citation: Machin-Mastromatteo, J.D., & Martinez-Villa, B.A. (2017). Subordinated complacency, ferocious rivalry, or equitable work: On the independence and separation of State powers, Information Development, 33(2), 210-218. https://doi.org/10.1177/0266666916688296
In the new issue of Developing Latin America: ‘Piracy of scientific papers in Latin America: An analysis of Sci-Hub usage data’, co-written with dear colleagues Alejandro Uribe-Tirado and María Elena Romero-Ortiz, we present Sci-Hub’s characteristics, a criticism to its perception as a de-facto component of the Open Access movement, its implications for information professionals, universities and libraries, and we replicate an analysis published in Science, but using only Latin America usage data. Ever wondered how many papers are illegally downloaded from Sci-Hub in the region? Find also the answer of how illegal downloads compare to legal downloads done through the Mexican and Argentinian scientific information consortia.
Acknowledgements: we wish to thank the InfoTecarios group for informing about regional challenges, specifically the help of Saúl Equihua, Myrna Lee and Renny Granda; and comments received from Dominique Babini, Paola Azrilevich, Alejandra Méndez, Luis Rojas, Nitida Carranza, Sonia Amaya, and Dr. Elsi Jiménez.
Abstract: Sci-Hub hosts pirated copies of 51 million scientific papers from commercial publishers. This article presents the site’s characteristics, it criticizes that it might be perceived as a de-facto component of the Open Access movement, it replicates an analysis published in Science using its available usage data, but limiting it to Latin America, and presents implications caused by this site for information professionals, universities and libraries.
Recommended reference: Machin-Mastromatteo, J.D., Uribe-Tirado, A., and Romero-Ortiz, M. E. (2016). Piracy of scientific papers in Latin America: An analysis of Sci-Hub usage data. Information Development, 32(5), 1806–1814. http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0266666916671080
In the new issue of Developing Latin America: ‘Four theories to improve justice in the region’, co-written with my good friend, the lawyer Basilio A. Martínez-Villa, we provide a very brief introduction to the theories of justice of John Rawls, Ronald Dworkin, Jürgen Habermas and Amartya Sen, as they bring forward the requirement for developing indicators with a wider scope, and we summarize relevant aspects of justice that can enrich the needed reflection and discussion for new Latin American models of justice.
Abstract: The theories of justice according to Rawls, Dworkin, Habermas and Sen, although from a predominantly Anglo-Saxon background, are useful for the Latin American reality. Such views of justice bring forward the requirement for developing indicators with a wider scope, so that they measure diverse aspects such as: income, commodities, freedoms, economic, cultural, educative, political and well-being factors. Concluding remarks summarize relevant aspects of justice that can enrich the needed reflection and discussion for new Latin American models of justice.
Recommended reference: Martinez-Villa, B. A. and Machin-Mastromatteo, J. D. (2016). Four theories to improve justice in the region. Information Development, 32(4), 1284–1288. http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0266666916658588