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Ferrnando A. Chinchilla

Ferrnando A. Chinchilla
International Centre for the Prevention of Crime

PhD

About

28
Publications
2,343
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83
Citations
Introduction
I am a political scientist, with comprehensive experience in peace, democracy, and human rights. From 2009 to now I have been a full-time consultant, a project manager, and an analyst for international organizations in Costa Rica, Ecuador, and Canada, as well as Professor for two universities in Mexico. Fieldworks include Angola, Colombia, El Salvador, Democratic Republic of Congo, Mauritania, Tchad, and South Africa, among others.
Additional affiliations
March 2016 - present
The Transnational Center for Sustainable Peace
Position
  • Managing Director
Description
  • The TCSP is an independent, transnational, interinstitutional and multidisciplinary laboratory (research center, an advocacy group, and a professional association) , specialized in violence and peace research.
January 2013 - December 2015
Universidad de Monterrey
Position
  • Managing Director
Description
  • El CPCEI es una red de especialistas en temas de paz, violencia, y resolución de conflictos que trabaja para fortalecer de perspectivas holísticas e integrales dedicadas al estudio de los procesos de búsqueda, construcción, y consolidación de la paz.
January 2012 - December 2015
Universidad de Monterrey
Position
  • Professor (Associate)
Description
  • Teaching courses; Implementing the Pedagogic Model; Supervising theses; Drafting and funding projects; Establishing institutional contacts with strategic academic partners; Creating a space of academic and applied research.
Education
January 1999 - July 2008
Université de Montréal
Field of study
  • Political Science
September 1997 - July 1999
Université de Montréal
Field of study
  • Political Science
February 1991 - March 1997
University of Costa Rica
Field of study
  • Ciencias Políticas

Publications

Publications (28)
Article
Full-text available
Organized crime is usually approached as a criminal issue. Today, however, a rising number of scholars, political leaders, and policymakers accept that this strategy has failed. This bi-national study suggests that collective violence, the study of organized crime-related homicide, should be treated as a public health issue. Can organized crime vio...
Article
Full-text available
This article introduces a Crime, Law & Social Change special issue on rethinking organised crime, collective violence and insecurity in contemporary Latin America. The five contributions, which among them cover the cases of Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Guatemala and Mexico, address the puzzle of why and how in the midst of the world’s most serious...
Article
Full-text available
Mexico has for an extended period been experiencing homicide rates above, or close to, epidemic levels. Instead of examining why formal institutional reform geared at strengthening democracy has not helped to foment peace and security, as most of the research on collective violence in Latin America and the Caribbean does, this paper focuses on the...
Research
Can collective violence along the U.S.-Mexico border—the Mexican states of Chihuahua, Coahuila, Nuevo León, and Tamaulipas, plus Texas—be considered an “epidemic”? This paper answers this question by applying a public health approach to organized crime- related homicides, an extreme and coordinated form of economic violence with deep social meaning...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Current accounts of collective violence in Mexico identify several types of armed nonstate actors (ANSAs), among them drug cartels, street gangs, and sicario and paramilitary groups. In addition, there are subtypes within these categories. Some paramilitaries, for example, are labelled as (legitimate) community self-defence groups or ‘popular’ and...
Article
Full-text available
América Latina y el Caribe son una “zona de paz”. Así lo declaró la segunda cumbre de la Comunidad de Estados Latinoamericanos y Caribeños realizada en Cuba, en 2014. Sin embargo, crecientes percepciones de criminalidad y corrupción han reavivado la violencia en Sudamérica, y en 2015, por el efecto de narcotraficantes y pandillas, Centroamérica y e...
Technical Report
Full-text available
Can collective violence along the U.S.-Mexico border—the Mexican states of Chihuahua, Coahuila, Nuevo León, and Tamaulipas, plus Texas—be considered an “epidemic”? This paper answers this question by applying a public health approach to organized crime- related homicides, an extreme and coordinated form of economic violence with deep social meaning...
Article
Full-text available
Cette chronique vise à dégager un raisonnement capable de relier diverses thèses dans une démarche moins morcelée, en se penchant sur les causes et les effets de cette violence. Deux hypothèses seront étudiées, l’une traitant la violence comme variable dépendante, l’autre comme indépendante : (a) la violence résulte de la transformation du marché i...
Article
Full-text available
This article presents the experience of the Organisation of American States’ (OAS) Good Offices Mission for Colombia and Ecuador over 33 months of operation. The author examines how the mission’s initial focus on from-above confidence building was redirected in favour of a from-below confidence building scheme, and identifies four factors which help ex...
Article
Full-text available
Why did certain Colombian armed groups such as the M-19, the Popular Liberation Army (EPL), the Workers’ Revolutionary Party (PRT) and the Socialist Renovation Current (CRS) decide to sign a peace agreement while others, such as the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) and the National Liberation Army (ELN) refused to do so? Based on a his...
Article
Full-text available
Why did certain Colombian armed groups such as the M-19, the Popular Liberation Army (EPL), the Workers' Revolutionary Party (PRT) and the Socialist Renovation Current (CRS) decide to sign a peace agreement while others, such as the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) and the National Liberation Army (ELN) refused to do so? Based on a his...
Article
Full-text available
Why is that the FMLN and the Salvadorian government, after twelve years of Civil War, succeeded in negotiating a peace accord in less than two years while the FARC-EP and the Colombian government are unable to consolidate a cease-fire after forty-six years of internal armed conflict? It's argued that the belligerents extremism or moderation is key...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
¿Por qué el FMLN y el gobierno salvadoreño lograron negociar un acuerdo de paz en menos de dos años mientras que las FARC y el gobierno colombiano no han podido consolidar un cese del fuego en cuarenta y seis? En este ensayo, demuestro que el carácter “extremista” o “moderado” de los beligerantes es parte esencial de la respuesta. La aversión a la...
Technical Report
Full-text available
The Virgilio Barco and César Gaviria Governments have signed peace agreements with armed groups while, at the same time, continuing to fight against others. This situation, which some Colombian researchers call a fragmented peace, is neither a precarious peace nor a sustainable peace. While sequencing Disarmament, Demobilization, and Reintegration...
Thesis
Full-text available
This PhD dissertation explains why some internal armed conflicts are “easier” to resolve than others and why some processes of pacification end in a sustainable peace while sometimes they finish in a precarious peace or often fail with renewed eruptions of hostilities. I suggest that a balance of power favourable to moderate actors, and a weakening...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
This text is based on the following components: (a) extremists and/or moderate actors interact in the internal political arena; (b) those actors defend interests, the ones considered as divisible, the others viewed as indivisible; (c) definition and perception of interests in game, as well as interests themselves, change during the conflict; (d) th...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Why are some peace agreements more effective in preventing new waves of violence than others? This essay shows that the success or failure of peace missions depends, to an important extent, on the internal balance of power. As indicated in the first section, defining possible risks and obstacles to peace, that is, diagnosing internal power relation...
Technical Report
Full-text available
Depuis 1991, les États-Unis ont lancé dans le cadre d'une législation spéciale (le Nunn-Lugar Act), un effort massif pour lutter contre les risques de prolifération posés par l'ancien arsenal soviétique: il s'agit du Cooperative Threat Reduction Program ou CTR. Ce lui-ci englobe toutes les actions entreprises conjointement par les autorités américa...
Technical Report
Full-text available
Cette étude se divisera en deux grandes parties. Dans la première, nous analyserons les principales composantes de l'effort américain destiné à démanteler l'arsenal stratégique russe couvert par START I. Il sera particulièrement question des initiatives touchant à la destruction et à la sécurité des armes et de leurs vecteurs, notamment le Strategi...
Article
Full-text available
Con el objetivo de redinamizar el debate en torno a la relación existente entre guerra, paz, y democracia, este artículo iniciará argumentando que una transición hacia la democracia es imposible en contexto de guerra civil. El respecto formal de los derechos individuales y colectivos se alcanzó, por primera vez en la historia de estos países, en 19...
Article
Full-text available
Desde sus primeros años de vida independiente, República Dominicana, al igual que la mayoría de países latinoamericanos, se ha caracterizado por el predominio de proyectos políticos autoritarios, lo que ha causado un endeble desarrollo democrático. Por esta razón, resulta interesante analizar el recién concluido proceso electoral de 1996, buscando...
Article
Full-text available
Desde principios de la década de los cincuenta, estudios realizados desde las perspectivas neoliberales y keynesianas, han analizado el problema del desarrollo y el subdesarrollo. Todos han señalado la importancia, en los países tercermundistas, del ahorro interno y la acumulación de capital como factores fundamentales para dirigir estas sociedades...

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Projects (4)
Archived project
Cette thèse cherche à comprendre pourquoi certains conflits armés internes sont «plus difficiles» à résoudre que d’autres et pourquoi certains processus de pacification aboutissent à une paix soutenable alors que parfois ils finissent en paix précaire ou au retour de la violence. L’hypothèse générale postule qu’un rapport de forces favorable à des acteurs modérés, lié à une stratégie d’affaiblissement des extrémistes (mise en œuvre par un acteur international), aboutit à une paix soutenable. Le cas du Salvador, traité ici comme un idéaltype, prouve la validité de cette proposition. Nous cherchons par la suite à établir l’importance de chacune des varia¬bles. Pour y parvenir, nous proposons deux sous-hypothèses et une comparaison avec trois cas supplémentaires. En Angola et en Colombie, les rapports de force sont favorables à des extrémistes, mais en Angola un acteur international inter¬vient, ce qui n’est pas le cas en Colombie. Au-delà des différences, le résultat est le même dans les deux cas: les conflits armés internes se poursuivent dans ces pays au cours de la décennie 1990. Entre-temps, au Mozambique, un rapport de forces mixte (qui donne avantage à au moins un modéré) s’amalgame à l’intervention internationale. Sa conclusion est une paix précaire. Nous contrastons le modèle théorique avec des entretiens semi-dirigés et de la recherche sur des sources primaires et secondaires réalisées pendant nos terrains. Nous employons une approche de sentiers de dépendance (path-dependence) qui nous permet de concevoir un accord de paix comme une passerelle entre les «intérêts vitaux» en jeu lors d’un conflit et les institutions sensées contraindre les choix des acteurs (endiguement de l’incertitude politique) dans la phase postconflictuelle. En examinant la relation entre les transitions vers la démocratie et vers la paix, nous suggérons que la paix ne peut pas être soutenable si elle ne s’accompagne pas d’une démocratisation. De plus, sans pacification, la démocratisation risque de se terminer par l’irruption de nouvelles vagues de violence. Nous relions donc la paix soutenable à la polyarchie. La paix précaire, quant à elle, est reliée à divers facteurs, dont l’établissement d’un régime de partage de pouvoir. Notre contribution consiste donc, sur le plan théorique, à identifier des «trajectoires de pacification» qui rendent possible l’articulation de plusieurs explications en un modèle intégré. Sur le plan pratique, ces constatations peuvent aider à déterminer avec plus de précision les risques de déraille¬ment des sentiers transitionnels, ce qui peut se traduire par des interventions internationales mieux structurées pour mettre en place des institutions moins vulnérables à l’irruption de nouvelles vagues de violence.
Project
Custodians of peace, as it is often assumed, adhere instinctively to international norms on Human Rights. In recent years, however, developing countries, most of them with latterly authoritarian experiences, have increased their participation in peacekeeping operations, either through regional entities (i.e. African Union, Organization of American States) or the United Nations. Although many studies assessed the rationale and extent of the contribution of African countries to peacekeeping missions, few studies have explored the Latin American participation. Yet Brazil and Uruguay have become top troops contributors to Haiti; Argentina, Chile, and Paraguay announced how they conceived peacekeeping as a chance to assert their status, as reliable partners in the international community; Colombia has declared its willingness to increase its participation in UN peacekeeping as soon as its own pacification process ends; even Mexico announced it was considering engaging in UN peacekeeping missions, Colombia, Honduras and Guatemala being identified as theaters for eventual future deployments. This panel provides a preliminary and exploratory assessment of the Latin American participation in UN Peace Operations in the Post-Cold War era. First, Chinchilla explores whether the domestic authoritarian past of key Latin American states affects the capacity of current deployed troops to protect and reinforce peace and democracy abroad. It questions the impact of this participation on democratization within the army of the contributing country. Martin-Brûlé examines whether there is a new trend in Latin American countries in negotiating their regional influence through international organizations such as the United Nations. Lastly, Pingeot innovatively looks at the only fully-deployed peacekeeping UN mission in the Americas (and in the Western Hemisphere), MINUSTAH, and assesses how crime (linked to drug-trafficking organizations, and others) has led to a depoliticization of insecurity and thus justifying the adoption of “robust peacekeeping” more akin to policing than peacekeeping.
Archived project
From Mexico to Argentina, many regions and locales in Latin America and the Caribbean are today immersed in a virtual vortex of collective violence and insecurity. Though not the only or primary cause and driver of violence and insecurity, organized crime activities are typically identified as a key contributing factor. The gravity of the situation in the continent stands out when compared to other regions in the developing world also affected by deadly violence, such as parts of sub-Saharan Africa, South Asia and the Middle East. Nowhere are homicides – and femicides – and other forms of serious and violent crime, including armed robberies and assaults, as elevated as in Latin America. According to a recent report by the United Nation’s Development Programme (UNDP), “Latin America is the only region in the world where lethal violence increased between 2000 and 2010. While homicide rates in most regions of the world have fallen by as much as 50 percent, in Latin America they increased by 12 percent. In a decade, more than one million people have died in Latin America and the Caribbean as a result of criminal violence”. Public opinion surveys, such as those conducted by Vanderbilt University’s Latin American Public Opinion Project (LAPOP), reveal that since the 1990s citizen perceptions of insecurity and fear of crime have steadily been on the rise. Pervasive violence and insecurity are certainly not new to Latin America. The continent has the unenviable reputation of being amongst the most “violence-prone” regions on earth, with “political violence, guerrilla movements and civil wars, bloody revolutions, brutal dictatorships, domestic violence, criminal violence, and youth violence”, amongst other forms of collective violence, all running like a red thread through its political and social history since independence two centuries ago. Yet what in the past two decades has bedeviled scholars and policymakers alike is that despite the transitions from military-authoritarian to democratic-civilian rule, in many countries there has been no end to bloodshed of war-like dimensions, the “routinization of violence” and the spread of “overall conditions of lawlessness”. Instead of moving along the path of peaceful and inclusive human development Latin America and the Caribbean entered a new “age of insecurity”. We propose to shift the focus from a relatively limited one on democracy and the state to a broader one on political and social order and governance. In our view this represents a necessary break with conventional accounts and narratives and helps open up new avenues for engaging with the “real politics” and governance of crime, violence and insecurity in the continent. Looking at the issues from the vantage point of political and social order – which we loosely define as systems of domination and/or patterns of social organization – has several advantages. It helps shed some of the burdensome normative baggage that can be a serious hindrance for gaining better insights into complex political and social phenomena (as we know, for instance, from the democratization literature); it opens up much needed room to study actually existing political and social orders that may be democratic in form but in Latin America and the Caribbean are in essence something else; and it allows for a more objective and unbiased treatment of the role of collective violence in shaping human interaction and political and social order in the continent today.