Context of the Second Call

Between 2009 and 2011, nine Latin American countries will commemorate the bicentennial of their independence. Other countries in the region will follow with their own commemorations soon after. The bicentennials coincide with the growing impact of the economic crisis and the change of many national governments in Latin America, they constitute a historic opportunity for reflection, action and the design of new paths for development, inclusion and social justice in the region.

In 2008, the 1st International Call 2008 “Building Latin American Bicentennials in the Age of Globalization” was carried out. After disseminating the call through electronic newsletters that were sent to 3500 institutions and individuals, publishing it on more than 80 websites, and recording 175,000 hits on the OLA website, 79 final submissions were received, including 63 essays and 16 audiovisual presentations from 14 countries. An academic committee made up of 31 members, representing nine countries, participated in three successive rounds of evaluation to select the five awards and seven honorable mentions. The awarded works were presented by their authors at the “International Conference” held on February 26 and 27, 2009 in New York , and will be integrated in the book “Building Latin American Bicentennials in the Age of Globalization” to be published in 2010.

The 2nd Call

Unlike the 1st International Call for papers, which included a comparative view of the centennial commemorations of the Latin American countries, this one focuses only on the Bicentennials.

The aim of this Call is to join efforts to understand how the bicentennial commemorations are affected by the important current economic, political, and social processes, and how, at the same time, the Bicentennials affect these processes.

The 5 awarded authors will present their work at an international conference in Mexico in 2011. The awarded works and the mentions will be published in a book in 2011.

This 2nd Call promotes the exchange of information, reflections and knowledge about how different Latin American countries commemorate their national bicentennial. It emphasizes the relationship between the commemorations, the global economic crisis, and changing patterns of political mobilization and leadership, including the creative tension between balance and vision, which is very much related to the idea of “Bicentennials in Action”.

In this context, we are requesting essays and audiovisual presentations on any of the following types of work:

  • 1. Documentation and interpretation of the different ways in which Latin American countries commemorate their national bicentennial through public, private and civil society initiatives.
  • 2. Documentation and interpretation of the relationship between the bicentennial commemorations and the effect of the global economic crisis on local economies.
  • 3. Documentation and interpretation of the relationship between the bicentennial commemorations and the local political mobilizations.

These works can be on the areas of media, public policy, urban projects and transformations, public works, social mobilization, educational policies, scientific projects, official commemorations, cultural productions, production and dissemination of visual images, photographs, videos, films, interactive projects, Internet applications, or other areas.

Compliance with the types of work requested is a mandatory condition for participating in this Call.

About the Submissions

Submissions could consist of two types of work: 1. academic papers that could include visual images; or 2. visual and multimedia digital presentations such as videos, power points or other digital media. All submissions must be in English, Spanish, or Portuguese.

Abstracts of up to 300 words should be sent, together with the Application Form to, cc. by June 14th, 2010 (LAST EXTENSION OF THE DEADLINE). Responses will be sent by email to authors of all submissions by June 21st, 2010. 

  • Full papers should have a suggested length of between 4,000 and 7,000 words. The epigraphs of the images and bibliography will not be counted in the length requested.
  • Full audiovisual presentationsshould have a suggested duration of 5 to 15 minutes, with a minimum resolution of 720 x 480 (for NTSC) or 720 x 576 (for PAL). The following formats will be accepted: Adobe Flash, DVD (vob, ifo, bup), SVCD, VCD, mpg, mpeg, mp4, avi, mov, wmv. Other formats are subject to prior approval by the coordinators. Audiovisual presentations should be accompanied by a written description of no more than 1,000 words.
  •  All final submissions (papers and audiovisual presentations) should be received by November 1st, 2010.

Selection and dissemination of papers and audiovisual presentations: Awards and Honorable Mentions

On behalf of the FADU, the OLA, the UNAM and the collaborating institutions, an independent jury of scholars will select the award-winning presentations and papers, honorable mentions, and representative presentations from among the final submissions.

The evaluation criteria for the essays include quality of the ideas, relevance, coherence and structure, and originality. For the audiovisual presentations, the style of communication will be added to the criteria of content: stylistic quality, technical level and originality.

Distinctions include:

  • 5 Awards: travel to participate in the International Conference that will be held in Mexico in 2011. These works will be included in the forthcoming book, Bicentenarios en Acción.
  • 7 Honorable Mentions: works are to be included in the forthcoming book, Bicentenarios en Acción.

Other works chosen as representative of the diversity of submissions will be published on the websites of OLA and the Programa Bicentenarios at FADU-UBA.

Previous Activities: Workshops

Between the months of March and May 2010, specific dates to be determined, there will be a series of workshops in Argentina, Chile, Ecuador, Mexico and Uruguay.

These workshops open to those interested in participating in the Call, will aim to provide a space for reflection and identification of possible topics. Each of these meetings will include the special participation of internationally recognized scholars.


  • October 21th, 2009 > Launch of the Call.
  • March to May 2010 > Workshops* in Buenos Aires, Montevideo, Quito, Mexico City and Santiago, Chile.
  • June 14th, 2010 (LAST EXTENSION OF THE DEADLINE)st, 2010 > Deadline for submission of abstracts and Application Form.
  • June 21stth, 2010 > Responses will be sent to authors of all submissions.
  • October 15th, 2010 > Final date for inquires and consultations with the organizers regarding submissions.
  • November 1st, 2010 > Deadline for final submissions.
  • March 7th, 2011 > Publication of the results on the OLA website.
  • May 30th and 31st or June 2nd and 3rd, 2011 > International Conference: “Bicentennials in Action”, Mexico.
  • December 2011 > Publication of the book Bicentenarios en Acción.


By submitting work for consideration, participants agree to the Rules of the Call for Submissions.


Ileana Versace y Gabriela Sorda (Spanish and Portuguese):

Coordinación Programa Bicentenarios FADU UBA

OLA (Spanish and English):

Coordination Building Latin American Bicentennials, OLA, The New School

Organized by:

  • Programa Bicentenarios, Facultad de Arquitectura, Diseño y Urbanismo, Universidad de Buenos Aires (FADU/ UBA)
  • Observatory on Latin America (OLA), The New School, New York
  • Instituto de Investigaciones Históricas, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (IIH/ UNAM)

In collaboration with:

The institutional support of:

Under the auspices of:

  • UNESCO y la Comisión Nacional Argentina de Cooperación con la UNESCO
  • Organización de Estados Iberoamericanos para la Educación, la Ciencia y la Cultura (OEI)
  • Secretaría de Cultura de la Presidencia de la Nación, Argentina

And the declaration of academic interest of:

  • Facultad de Ciencias Sociales, Universidad de Buenos Aires (FSOC/ UBA)