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Alumni work to strengthen ties with Mexico

Faculty panel to discuss bilateral ties Nov. 9 in Mexico City

EVANSTON - A faculty panel organized by alumni leaders from Northwestern University will highlight the continuing collaboration between Northwestern and Mexico on Nov. 9 in Mexico City.

“Our trip to Mexico City underscores the enduring ties that Northwestern University and its Buffett Institute has with Mexico,” said Bruce Carruthers, director of the Buffett Institute for Global Studies at Northwestern and the moderator of the panel. “We need to keep engaging and learning from our southern neighbor.”

The panel will discuss research that touches on contemporary issues in Mexico. Paul Gillingham, associate professor of history, will talk about U.S.-Mexican relations; Sara Hernández, assistant professor of economics, will discuss social cohesion in Mexico City; and Sera Young, assistant professor of anthropology, will present her research on measuring household water insecurity and its policy implications in Mexico.

The event is hosted by Adolfo Autrey, who received his MBA from Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management in 1970 and is a member of the Kellogg Global Advisory Board.

“A new generation of Northwestern alumni in Mexico is coming together hosting these events in order to explore relevant contemporary issues and keep us connected to our alma mater,” Autrey said.

Cultivating global connections is a strategic priority for Northwestern, according to Fernando Chico, who earned his MBA from Kellogg in 1976 and now is one of the University’s trustees.

“We aim to bring Northwestern to the world and the world to Northwestern,” Chico said. “The Buffett Institute is one of the main vehicles for the implementation of this ambitious goal, and it is a privilege to have this panel of faculty to present in our city.”

Event Details

When: Thursday, Nov. 9 at 7 p.m.

Where: Club de Industriales
Calle Andrés Bello 29
Polanco, Ciudad de México

Panel Discussion

Moderator: Bruce Carruthers, director of the Buffett Institute for Global Studies at Northwestern University and John D. MacArthur Chair and Professor of Sociology

“The Ties that Bind: NAFTA, Narcotics and U.S.-Mexican Relations”
Paul Gillingham

“Street Harassment and Social Cohesion in Mexico City”
Sara Hernández

“Household Water Insecurity: Public Health and Policy Implications in Mexico”
Sera Young

About the scholars and their research: 

Paul Gillingham specializes in politics, culture and violence in modern Mexico. His first book, “Cuauhtémoc’s Bones: Forging National Identity in Modern Mexico,” was awarded the Conference on Latin American History’s Mexican history prize. He is coeditor of “Dictablanda: Politics, Work, and Culture in Mexico, 1938–1968” and “Journalism, Satire and Censorship in Modern Mexico” (forthcoming). He is currently working on a history of the Partido Revolucionario Institucional and a national history of Mexico. Gillingham is director of Northwestern’s Latin American and Caribbean Studies Program, coeditor of the Violence in Latin American History series at the University of California Press and founder of the Mexican Intelligence Digital Archives.

Sara Hernández focuses on the intersection of development and labor economics, with a marked gender component. She is particularly interested in understanding the mechanisms that propel females into the labor force and what the consequences are of doing so for individuals, households and communities. Her work has focused on the interaction between international trade and living standards, including violence, education and fertility.

Sera Young focuses on improving maternal and child health in low-resource settings. Her research group investigates the causes and consequences of food and water insecurity among vulnerable women and children. Currently, she is leading the development of a cross-culturally valid scale to measure household water insecurity, with sites in 20 countries. She draws on her training in medical anthropology, international nutrition and public health to understand how mothers preserve their health and that of their families. For her efforts, she has received a number of grants, awards and honors, including the Margaret Mead Award for her book “Craving Earth.” 

Northwestern in Mexico

Northwestern has four partnerships with Universidad Panamericana. These include public health, clinical rotations, MBA exchanges and a dual LLM with Northwestern’s Pritzker School of Law. There also are student exchanges with Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de México.

There are currently 775 Northwestern alumni in Mexico.