Tec News: APRU universities meet in San Cristóbal de las Casas to hold dialog on indigenous knowledge in the Pacific Rim
November 7, 2022

Under the leadership of Tecnológico de Monterrey and the University of Melbourne, the Association of Pacific Rim Universities (APRU) has hosted the 1st Indigenous Knowledge Workshop.

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Original Press Release from Tec in Spanish

Monterrey, Nuevo León, on November 7, 2022.- The 1st Indigenous Knowledge Workshop has been held from November 1 to 5 in San Cristóbal de las Casas, Chiapas, at the Tecnológico de Monterrey Center for Social Innovation (CIS), a space that fosters the connection between the academic community and indigenous communities through social innovation projects. This event was held to share best practices and collaborate on common interests to promote indigenous heritage in the Pacific Rim.

The program consisted of five sessions, in which the University of Oregon, University of Auckland, University of Melbourne, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, University of the Philippines, Universidad San Francisco de Quito, Simon Fraser University, and Tecnológico de Monterrey shared initiatives and projects to strengthen the commitment between researchers to promote and improve education programs on indigenous studies.

Mexico is one of the most culturally diverse countries in the world. Its indigenous population, which includes 68 indigenous peoples and 11 linguistic groups, is present in a fourth of the nation’s territories. Furthermore, San Cristóbal de las Casas in Chiapas is a multicultural city where the worldview of indigenous peoples who are descendants of the Maya converges with the global vision of visitors and residents worldwide.

“For Tec de Monterrey, it’s very important to work with the knowledge from our indigenous peoples. At this event, besides exploring better best practices in social innovation from different parts of the Pacific Rim, knowledge and experiences were shared about preserving the language, education, cultural diversity, and identity,” said Inés Sáenz, Vice President of Inclusion, Social Impact, and Sustainability at Tecnológico de Monterrey. “The state of Chiapas is home to 12 indigenous languages that are fundamental to the identity of the indigenous peoples from these lands, for preserving their culture, worldview, and expressing their self-determination,” she added.

“We’re here to highlight a series of dreams and realizations about cultural diversity in all its forms. As universities, we’ll continue to promote recognition of human dignity and representation,” said Felisa González, Director of the Tecnológico de Monterrey Center for Recognition of Human Dignity.

At the event, Dr. María Patricia Pérez Moreno, a Tzeltal Maya from Bachajón in Chiapas who is Deputy Director of the Regional Planning Department at the National Institute of Indigenous Peoples, presented the talk “The p’ijilaletik (wisdom) of indigenous peoples: challenges and advances in its recognition and visibility.” Its purpose was to address the current context around the efforts made regarding knowledge from communities and the challenges still being faced.

Pérez Moreno mentioned that “we not only need to recognize and accept the p’ijilaletik of indigenous peoples, but also the people and their way of life, that they can build better communities, health services, and access to education, as a reflection of the lekil kuxlejal (the good life) that everyone should be entitled to,” she said.

The program included immersion activities in indigenous communities where attendees could connect with people and their cultures, as well as witness traditions such as the Mayan Fire ceremony and the ritual of the Tzotzil community in San Juan Chamula.

Photograph download link: https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/10WWlukEP2rRwt_XH-hl6HawH7770cTmU

More on APRU Indigenous Knowledges Working Group:

https://www.apru.org/our-work/university-leadership/indigenous-knowledges-working-group/

For more information about the workshop, please visit here.

About Tecnológico de Monterrey

Tecnológico de Monterrey (https://tec.mx/es) is a private, not-for-profit, multi-campus university system. Since it was founded in 1943, it has stood out for its academic excellence, educational innovation, entrepreneurship, and internationalization, as well as its outreach with industry and employers, and its proven track record. It has campuses in 29 Mexican cities; 67,000 undergraduate and graduate students and almost 7,000 professors; as well as more than 26,000 high school students and 2,500 professors at that level. The institution has been accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) since 1950. According to the QS World University Rankings (2022), it holds 161st place, ranked number 30 among the world’s private universities; and number 1 in Latin America and 26th in the world in the QS Graduate Employability Rankings (2022). In the Times Higher Education Latin America University Rankings (2022), it is number 4 in Latin America; as well as being the only university outside the U.S. in the Top Schools for Entrepreneurship Ranking (2022) from Princeton Review and Entrepreneur, occupying 6th place in entrepreneurship programs at undergraduate level. It belongs to several networks with international prestige, such as the Association of Pacific Rim Universities (APRU), Universitas 21 (U21), and the Worldwide Universities Network (WUN).

About APRU

As a network of 60 leading universities linking the Americas, Asia, and Australasia, the Association of Pacific Rim Universities, APRU (https://apru.org/) brings together thought leaders, researchers, and policy-makers to exchange ideas and collaborate on practical solutions to the challenges of the 21st century. They leverage their members’ collective education and research capabilities into the international public policy process. In the post-pandemic era, their strategic priorities focus on providing a neutral platform for high-level policy dialogue, taking action on climate change, and supporting diversity, inclusion, and minorities. APRU’s primary activities support these strategic priorities with a focus on critical areas such as disaster risk reduction, women in leadership, indigenous knowledge, virtual student exchange, esports, population aging, global health, sustainable cities, artificial intelligence, waste management, and more.

Press Contacts: 

Teresa Barragán
Tecnológico de Monterrey
[email protected]
T.: (81) 8088 4819

Daniela García
Alterpraxis
[email protected]
T.: (55) 5059 1135

Jack Ng
Director, Communications
APRU
[email protected]

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