Boaventura de Sousa remarks “Our universities need popular education” during ARNA2017 in Cartagena. Article by Cristiano Morsolin

Orlando Fals Borda event june 2017

Today prof. Boaventura de Sousa (Coimbra University) remarks during the 5th Annual Conference of Research Action Network of the Americas (ARNA): “I am sad today. This is not first global assembly of knowledge democracy. NO representation of majority of peoples.

Can part action research represent the chasm between those who ‘know’ and those whose knowledge is excluded?

How do we develop better coherence in our work? And work with the tensions?.

We are living a contradiction in this very assembly!

Our universities need popular education. I support the creation of a university of social movements“.

The vision of Freire and Fals Borda was that of a simpler time”.

Colombia has a neoliberal peace. Out with the guerrillas in with the multinationals” concluded Boaventura de Sousa Santos.

Dr. Rajesh Tandon, President, PRIA (India) and member of UNESCO Chair in Community Based Research and Social Responsibility in Higher Education, declared: “Key idea behind our Knowledge for Change (K4C) initiative aimed at building capacities of the Next Generation researchers in Community Based Research! Young participants but old speakers in ARNA…  When will aged step aside?”.

Yecid Ortega‏ (University of Toronto) says: “Strategic thought as a way to counter hegemonic knowledge of the North/West.”

According to Maria Teresa Castill, “Women’s knowledges have not been legitimized, but threatened by Western scientific knowledge. It’s important rethinking the PAR goal of “giving voice”. Maybe people already have voice and we need to learn to listen”.

Adriana Anacona thinks: “We need to recognize that before colonization there was patriarchy”.

According to Dr. Tandon_PRIA (India), “gender inequality is still a problem in higher education. Violence against woman still rif. Today, 40 years later, the principles of PAR are integral to the global discourse on development, participation & empowerment. When Orlando Fals Borda introduced the world to participatory action research in 1977, he insisted that knowledge must be in service of social change”.

Rajesh Tandon says today in the international day of domestic workers.

“There is no political group in Colombia that has the principles of participatory research at their base” declared prof. Victor Negrete (Colombia),

Ex-minister Rosa Maria Torres (Ecuador) argues: “How do u understand “civil society”? Worrying trend to reduce it to NGOs and to include private enterprise (for-profit) within it”.

Prof. Normando Suarez (Universidad Nacional de Colombia) edited selected works of Orlando Fals Borda, Campesinos de los Andes y otros escritos antológicos (  ).

UNESCO Chair in Community Based Research and Social Responsibility in Higher Education, declared “Thank you for sharing, Cristiano @morsolin1 We stand in solidarity with the spirit of Prof Orlando Fals Borda & ARNA2017. Best wishes!”.

Wafa Singh – UNESCO Chair in Community Based Research and Social Responsibility in Higher Education in Asia (India) wrote: “Wonderful! Looking forward to the updates from d historic gathering! Wish you a great conference! Best wishs from India & UNESCO Chair team!”.

Thank you Dr. Rajesh Tandon to document ARNA conference (

40 years ago, Colombian sociologist Orlando Fals Borda introduced the world to Participatory Action Research (PAR).

Prof. Brandao (Brazil) and prof. Alfonso Torres (Colombia) in ARNA about IAP:



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