The Amazon River Basin contains the world’s largest and most biodiverse river as well as its largest rainforest, providing the planet with an irreplaceable ecosystem that is a habitat for 30 percent of the world’s plant and animal species and that absorbs two billion tons of carbon dioxide each year. The Amazon River is also a key source of food, medicine, and livelihood for more than 30 million people across the region.
This environment is under imminent threat but the underlying drivers and potential solutions are complex and require expertise from a wide variety of perspectives and disciplines.
To meet this urgent need, the Fulbright Program has launched Fulbright Amazonia to create an international network of scholars and practitioners who will conduct research and recommend policies dedicated to protecting fragile eco-systems and improving lives and livelihoods in rural and Indigenous communities of the Amazon. They will focus on three key areas:
Fulbright Amazonia builds on existing networks and the close collaboration among U.S. and Amazonian universities and research centers to promote innovative approaches that preserve Amazonian social and ecological health and community traditions. The initiative furthers the collaborative work of nations and NGOs committed to the region’s environmental sustainability.
Fulbright Amazonia supports research in the countries that border the Amazon river: Brazil, Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Guyana, Peru, Suriname, and Venezuela. Through action-oriented research, Fulbright Amazonia Scholars contribute to the development of policies that support a sustainable Amazon Basin.
Sixteen expert researchers from the U.S. and Amazon countries will participate in Fulbright Amazonia under the intellectual leadership of two co-lead scholars. Participants will conduct cutting-edge research while also engaging in academic and professional exchanges between the U.S. and the Amazon countries.
Working in inter-disciplinary and multinational teams, the inaugural Fulbright Amazonia Scholars will work together to explore socially relevant research questions to recommend actionable policies that directly improve the quality of life of communities throughout the Amazon region.
Instituto de Pesquisa Ambiental da Amazônia (IPAM)
Florida International University
Daniel Bustos Echeverry
Vision Three Films and Noname
Venezuelan Institute for Scientific Research (IVIC)
Joao Vitor Campos-Silva
Stony Brook University
Carlos Del Cairo
Pontificia Universidad Javeriana (Bogotá)
Centre for Agricultural Research in Suriname (CELOS)
University at Albany School of Public Health – SUNY
Juan Pablo Iñamagua
Universidad de Cuenca
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Center for Territorial Intelligence
Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos
Federal University of Acre (UFAC)
Forest Health Consortium, ECOSCONSULT-PRODIGY
Universidad Peruana de Ciencias Aplicadas
Two notable Amazonia experts will provide intellectual leadership to the group:
Carlos Valério Aguiar Gomes
Federal University of Pará
University of California, Santa Barbara
The research projects supported by Fulbright Amazonia reflect the interdisciplinary nature of the most pressing social, economic, and environmental issues in today’s Amazon basin. From fisheries and livestock to agriculture and forestry resources, some projects illuminate local case studies of sustainable bioeconomies. Others focus on the impact of climate change on public health in order to better understand challenges faced by children as well as marginalized, rural, and Indigenous communities—such as food and water security. A third set of researchers will explore the forests of the Amazon to better understand their ecological and political vulnerabilities and advocate for their prosperity. Shared goals of inclusivity, dissemination, and policy impact unite these wide-ranging projects to ensure the applicability of their findings to those who inhabit this critical and unique region.
Fulbright Amazonia is part of the Fulbright Program, which is funded through an annual appropriation made by the U.S. Congress to the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. Participating governments and host institutions, corporations, and foundations around the world also provide direct and indirect support to the Program. Since 1946, the Fulbright Program has provided more than 400,000 participants from more than 160 countries with the opportunity to study, teach and conduct research, exchange ideas and contribute to finding solutions to shared international concerns.
Fulbright Amazonia is a program of the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA), with funding provided by the U.S. Government and the Fulbright Commission in Brazil (FBR), with the additional support of other binational Fulbright Commissions and U.S. Embassies in the Amazon region. The program is administered by the Institute of International Education. For further information about the Fulbright Program, please visit www.fulbrightprogram.org or contact the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs Press Office at [email protected].