2018 SNX (South-North Exchange Conference)
Antigua, Guatemala
May 17-19, 2018

From Extraction to Emancipation: Development Reimagined

Thursday, May 17 


Film and Opening Panel500 years by Pamela Yates 

500 YEARS tells the epic story that led Guatemala to a tipping point in their history, from the genocide trial of General Rios Montt to the popular movement that toppled President Otto Perez Molina. While indigenous peoples of Guatemala are no stranger to oppression, after the recent events that took place over a tumultuous three-year span, change finally seems possible with popular society’s outcry to end corruption. As witness to this heroic moment in Guatemalan history, 500

YEARS documents the beginning of the end of an unaccountable rule of law, and a society ready for change. Focusing on universal themes of justice, racism, power and corruption, 500 YEARS tells the story from the perspective of the majority indigenous Mayan population, and their struggles in the country’s growing democracy.


  • Aura Elena Farfán, FAMDEGUA (to be invited)
  • Judge Miguel Ángel Galves (to be invited) 
  • Judge Yasmín Barrios (to be invited) 
  • Edgar Pérez, Bufete Jurídico de Derechos Humanos (to be invited) 
  • Moderator:  Raquel Aldana and Luis Arnoldo Mogollón 


Friday, May 18

Breakfast at hotel 

9:00am–10:00am (60 minutes)

Panel 1: Collective Memory and Reparations for Past Crimes (60 minutes)

  • Post-Conflict Pluralism—Rachel Lopez, Drexel University School of Law 
  • "Paz, Paz—Que Entre Dos Bandos No Hay Más!"—Camilo Romero, Fundador, ReGeneración Colombia
  • Razing the Dead:  International Human Rights Law and the Treatment of "Slave" Burial Grounds—Ursula Tracy Doyle, Northern Kentucky University 

10:00 am-10:40am

Panel 2: Anti-Corruption and Transparency (40 minutes) 

  • Structures of Corruption:  Varieties of Corruption and the Institutionalization of Impunity—Lisa Iglesias, University of Miami School of Law
  • Fighting Corruption for Inclusive Development: Lessons from Guatemala and Brazil—Patricia Ferreira, Windsor Law  

10:40am- 11:00am Coffee Break (20 minutes)


Panel 3: Anti-Corruption and Transparency (60 minutes)

  • States of Coup:  Are They Ever Legitimate or Deserving of Recognition?—Darin Johnson, Howard University School of Law
  • Corruption v. Democracy in Latin America: How it Creates More Poverty—Sagrario Feliz
  • Challenging Corruption in Latin American Politics—Hernando A. Estévez, Universidad de La Salle, Bogotá- Colombia


Panel 4: Indigenous Self-Determination (60 minutes)

  • The Q’eqchi’ Struggle: How a Mayan People Significantly Advanced Human Rights in Guatemala in 2017—Michael Larrick, University of Denver, Sturm College of Law
  • Can Guatemalan Copyright Laws Protect Textile Designs Created by Indigenous People?— Paul Figueroa, USAID-Guatemala Promise v. Reality, International and Domestic Protection of Self-determination in Guatemala— Julie Davies, University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law  

1:00pm–2:30pm Hosted Lunch (90 minutes)

Keynote Speaker: 

Thelma Aldana—Guatemala Attorney General (to be invited)  


Panel 5: Indigenous Self-Determination (60 minutes)

  • Tar Sands and Pipelines: First Nations of Canada and Their Fight Against the Kinder Morgan Pipeline—Mark Harris, University of British Columbia
  • The Commodification of the Native in the 21st Century—Sarah Fowler, University of Bristol 
  • Asserting Control: Navajo Nationalism and Meaningful Indigenous Self-Determination—Ezra Rosser, American University, Washington College of Law 

3:30pm-3:45pm – Coffee Break (15 minutes)

3:45pm to 5:45pm 

Panel 6: Economic Exploitation, Corporate Social Responsibility and Environmental Justice (120 minutes)  [adjust time or create two panels]

  • Whiteness as Property—Sumi Cho, DePaul University College of Law and Terry Smith, DePaul University School of Law
  • Reforming Investor-State Dispute Settlement Mechanisms—José Roberto Juárez, Jr., University of Denver, Sturm College of Law The Dilemma of Serving Two Masters? Big Business, the Environment, and the Shibboleth of Social Justice in India—Badrinath Rao, Kettering University  
  • Justicia Constitucional Ambiental (Environmental Constitutional Justice)—Mario Mancilla—The San Carlos and Mariano Gálvez Universities (Environmental Law Master Programs)
  • From an Ameliorative to a Transformative Energy Politics—Patricia S. Mann
  • Moving from Footnote to Forethought: Animal Law in Guatemala—Courtney Lee, University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law 



Hosted Reception 

Dinner on your own


Saturday, May 19

Breakfast at hotel


Panel 7: Conversation with Environmental Justice Activists in Guatemala (90 minutes) 

  • Moderated conversation with Environmental Justice Activists in Guatemala— (to be invited) 
  • Rafael Maldonado, Legal Director, CALAS (to be invited)
  • Candelaria from La Puya (to be invited)
  • Youth activist from La Puya (to be invited)
  • Activist from San Rafael (to be invited)

10:30am-10:45am:  Coffee Break


Panel 8: South-North Migrations (80 minutes)

  • The Impact of Removal on Guatemala and its Nationals—Yolanda Vásquez, University of Cincinnati College of Law
  • A Right to Stay Home for Central Americans—Raquel Aldana, UC Davis School of Law
  • U.S. and Mexico’s Immigrant Crime Victim Protections—Evelyn Cruz, Arizona State University and Dra. Maria Auxiliadora Moreno Valenzuela, University of Sonora
  • Rethinking Removal: Protection Needs of Repatriated Guatemalan Children, Karen Baker, Georgetown University Law Center

12:05pm-1:50pm: Hosted Lunch (90 minutes)

Guest Speaker:  Silvia Irene Palma Calderón, Executive Director of INCEDES (to be invited)


Panel 9:  South-North Migrations (80 minutes)

  • Navigating Legal Uncertainty for Migrants—Jennifer Chacón, UC Irvine School of Law
  • The Face of New South Migration to Bible Belt: Tennessee’s Sanctuary and Exclusion Laws—Karla McKanders, Vanderbilt School of Law
  • Redefining Unlawful Presence—Andrew Tae-Hyun Kim, Syracuse University College of Law 
  • Post Hurricane Maria: Puerto Ricans as Internally Displaced Persons—Sheila I. Vélez Martínez, University of Pittsburgh School of Law


Panel 10: Labor Rights (60 minutes)

  • Scorched Border Litigation: How Employers of Temporary Foreign Migrants 
  • Attempt to Block Access to Justice—Briana Beltran and Lizbeth Cordova, Cornell Law School
  • The 2017 Labor Reform in Brazil: Main Normative Changes and Impacts to Workers—Isabela Fadul de Oliveira, Federal University of Bahia (Brasil)

4:10pm-4:30pm Coffee Break

4:30pm-5:30pm (60 minutes)

Panel 11: Social Impact Advocacy: A Critical Justice Toolkit—Francisco Valdes, University of Miami School of Law and Steven Bender, Seattle University Law School 

Dinner on your own