Last updated 10 April, 2004

Versão em português actualizada em 28 de Julho de 2003

On 5 February, 2004 I was sworn in as President of the Tropical Research Institute in Lisbon (IICT) where I had been director of the Center for Social Economics (CSE) since 1985 -  taking  what may be called a lusophone (i.e. Portuguese speaking) interest on the  political economy of development in Africa and Latin America. Wondering, in particular, how the prospects for the Portuguese language as a vehicle of culture and business interest impinge on the process of economic development. While the ideas go back much further, the identification of European and lusophone allegiances for the Portuguese was first described in Multiple allegiances as fate, presented at a conference on Regional Integration and Democracy sponsored by the Luso-American Development Foundation and Brown University in late 1995 (the preliminary version received useful comments from Philippe Schmitter, a political scientist at Stanford, but was never revised). As mentioned in that paper, the presentation benefited from my involvement during the previous two years with the  review of the Treaty on European Union by the parliamentary committee on  European affairs. Several interventions at the annual meetings in Divonne, France of the International Foundation for a European Civilization  also touched on Europe and lusophony as complementary allegiances of the Portuguese. 
A related activity is that of the Comittee of Lusophone Communities (CCL) of the Lisbon Geographical Society which I created in 1997 and where I began working on book titled Common Good, History and Prospects for the Portuguese people  (approximate translation into English of Bem Comum dos Portugueses launched at the Lisbon Academy of Science on May 13, 1999). The project carried out by IICT, Common memories: from the slave trade to lusophone communities, involving a social and economic dimension (for which CSE was responsible) also helped carry out the book´s research agenda, as follows:

Other lusophone activities:

First congress of entrepreneurs from Portuguese speaking communities
At the opening session of the first congress of entrepreneurs from Portuguese speaking communities, held at Hotel Ritz in Lisbon on 27 July, I made a presentation drawing on the conclusions of the first congress of lusophone communities held at Hotel Ipanema  in Porto one month before (below), especially those of the panel on Economics and Entrepreneurial Ethics. I also mentioned the related efforts of Forum Portugal Global to promote the internationalization of Portuguese business. The call for a code of conduct of the Portuguese speaking entrepreneurs in their relations with governments, shareholders, workers, customers and communities was enthusiastically echoed by the Minister of Economy, Mr. Pina Moura, in his intervention. He also stressed the importance of the internationalization of Portuguese business.

Conferences of lusophone communities
under the auspices of the Lisbon Geographical Society:
The first congress of lusophone communities held at Hotel Ipanema  in Porto on 18 and 19 June and titled Lusophony in the Information Age, had been under preparation since late 1997 and was organized into two plenary sessions and four panel discussions, e.g.:

The panels approved conclusions ratified in the closing session, in the presence of the Portuguese Secretary of State for Cooperation, Mr. Luis Amado. A partial publication of the proceedings appeared in GEPOLIS Revista de Filosofia e Cidadania, Universidade Católica Portuguesa, Inverno 1999, nº 6 pp. 145-180. Due to an unfortunate typo on page 149, the list of founders of the Comittee of Lusophone Communities (CCL) left me out, together with António Pedro Vasconcellos  (organizer of the congress) and Mendo Castro Henriques (director of GEPOLIS)...
The second congress of lusophone communities, on the topic of democracy and development, was to be held in Maputo, Mozambique in February 2000 but at its meeting of 23 December, 1999, the CCL decided to postponed it until further notice.

Teaching at Nova Forum

In November 1997, I organized an advanced course in the political economy of African cooperation, directed towards officials of the Portuguese Aid Agency (then called Institute of Portuguese Cooperation) and of similar institutions in the Portuguese-speaking countries. This course, which was held in the executive training center Nova Forum, has also obtained the support of the Development Economics vice-presidency of the World Bank and of the Development Assistance Committee of OECD. A second course, on Mozambique, was offered in January 1999, where I presented the global and African background. One of the readings (in Portuguese) is available here.

Jorge Braga de Macedo © 7 August, 1996 Return to my homepage