News Releases

The UWI hosts forum on the neighbouring crisis in Venezuela

For Release Upon Receipt - September 11, 2017


On Tuesday 12 September, 2017, the Institute of International Relations (IIR) at The University of the West Indies, St. Augustine Campus will bring together regional, international relations experts, diplomats and academics for a public forum on the multi-level crisis in Venezuela, Trinidad and Tobago’s South American neighbour. The event, which is free and open to the general public, takes the form of two, back-to-back panel discussions.

Panel one, which begins at 10:00 a.m. (Eastern Caribbean Time) will be moderated by Professor Jessica Byron, Director of the IIR, and discusses Latin American and Caribbean perspectives on the Venezuelan Crisis. Panellists will include:

·         Mr. Andres Serbin Pont, Research Director, Coordinadora Red de Investigaciones Economicas y Sociales (CRIES), Argentina

·         Mr. Ivan Ogando, Director FLACSO, The Dominican Republic

·         Dr. Anthony Gonzales, Retired Director IIR and UWI academic, Trinidad

·         Ms. Rochelle Nakhid, Coordinator, Ministry for Migrants and Refugees, Living Waters Foundation

Professor Patrick Watson, Director of the Sir Arthur Lewis Institute of Social and Economic Studies (SALISES) will moderate the second panel which follows at 11:40 a.m., and explores CARICOM sub-region perspectives. Speakers in that segment will include:

·         Ambassador Colin Granderson, Assistant Secretary-General, Foreign and Community Relations, CARICOM Secretariat

·         Mrs. Dionne Jackson-Miller, Attorney at Law, Radio and TV Journalist, Jamaica

·         Dr. Mark Kirton, Retired Sr. Lecturer, Institute of International Relations, UWI and University of Guyana

·         Ambassador Andreas Wickham, Ambassador of St. Vincent and the Grenadines to Venezuela

The forum takes place at Lecture Room 1, Institute of International Relations, The UWI, St. Augustine Campus. The proceedings will also be accessible via livestream at  For further information, please contact the Institute of International Relations, The University of the West Indies, St. Augustine Campus, Trinidad and Tobago at Tel: (868) 662-2002; 663-1334; 662-4392 Exts: 82010; 82084; 82011 or Email:


About the Institute of International Relations

The Institute of International Relations (IIR), which was established in 1966 by agreement between the Government of Trinidad and Tobago and the Government of Switzerland, is an independent and autonomous academic institution affiliated with The University of the West Indies (UWI).  Located at the St. Augustine Campus, the Institute offers a programme of courses and supervises research leading to the Postgraduate Diploma in International Relations; MSc in Global Studies; MPhil; and PhD in International Relations. The programme of courses comprehensively covers the geographical, historical, political, economic, social, cultural, legal and institutional aspects of international relations and emphasizes an inter-disciplinary approach in the study of relations between nations and other entities. The Institute, as an academic institution, subscribes to no particular doctrine and abstains from all propaganda. In addition to conducting teaching, research and study of international relations, the Institute engages in many activities including the organisation of special programmes, courses and seminars, and the provision of consultative assistance and research, for the governments and private sectors of the region, and regional organisations and agencies, which are intended to strengthen Caribbean responses to the challenges of international relations and the understanding thereof in the community at large. The IIR is committed to training the next generation of diplomats from the region.  To this end, a new diplomatic training centre—The Diplomatic Academy of the Caribbean—was launched on May 6, 2014. 

About The UWI

Since its inception in 1948, The University of the West Indies (The UWI) has evolved from a fledgling college in Jamaica with 33 students to a full-fledged, regional University with well over 40,000 students. Today, The UWI is the largest, most longstanding higher education provider in the Commonwealth Caribbean, with four campuses in BarbadosJamaicaTrinidad and Tobago, and the Open Campus. The UWI has faculty and students from more than 40 countries and collaborative links with 160 universities globally; it offers undergraduate and postgraduate degree options in Food & Agriculture, Engineering, Humanities & Education, Law, Medical Sciences, Science and Technology and Social Sciences. UWI’s seven priority focal areas are linked closely to the priorities identified by CARICOM and take into account such over-arching areas of concern to the region as environmental issues, health and wellness, gender equity and the critical importance of innovation. Website:

(Please note that the proper name of the university is The University of the West Indies, inclusive of the “The”, hence The UWI.)