Dear and esteemed members of LASA
After some institutional communications from LASA (two bulletins and one virtual “online” session on Facebook) related to the decisions made in relation to the Congress, I would like to address you more personally, to share in detail how the decision was made to have a Virtual Congress and the implications this has had on the life of the Association.
I know that some of our members have felt that LASA has not expressed the solidarity merited by the crisis situation caused by COVID-19 among its members, and there has been a lack of communication between LASA directors and its membership. Other people have not fully understood the reasoning behind organizing a conference in such delicate circumstances as these. At all times, the secretariat, the entire Executive Council (hereafter EC) and I, myself, as president, have tried to explain to different people, when asked, the reasoning behind the decisions. I very much feel that it has not been clear to everyone, and therefore I find it necessary to better explain to you our internal process, which has been very challenging for everyone.
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The Latin American Studies Association (LASA) is the largest professional association in the world for individuals and institutions engaged in the study of Latin America. With over 13,000 members, over 60% of whom reside outside the United States, LASA is the one association that brings together experts on Latin America from all disciplines and diverse occupational endeavors, across the globe. LASA's mission is to foster intellectual discussion, research, and teaching on Latin America, the Caribbean, and its people throughout the Americas, promote the interests of its diverse membership, and encourage civic engagement through network building and public debate.
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