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Funding Policy Research Under “Distasteful Regimes”: the Ford Foundation and the Social Sciences at the University of Brasília

Carlos Eduardo Suprinyak and Ramón García Fernández
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Carlos Eduardo Suprinyak: Cedeplar-UFMG
Ramón García Fernández: UFABC

No 520, Textos para Discussão Cedeplar-UFMG from Cedeplar, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais

Abstract: The Ford Foundation’s initial effort to assist in the development of the social sciences in Brazil coincided with the early years of the military regime that ruled the country between 1964 and 1985. Given the Foundation’s expressed goal of fostering research that was of potential relevance for public policy, the Brazilian political context posed a difficult dilemma. The issue came to the forefront amid discussions over a proposal for the creation of a Master’s Program in Economics at the University of Brasília (UnB). Although UnB’s modern institutional structure was ideally suited for the Foundation’s purposes, the university had been subject to repeated military interventions in late 1960’s. Moreover, its geographical closeness to the seat of Brazilian political power arose concerns that it could become an instrument in the hands of the military government. Using evidence from the Ford Foundation archives, the paper attempts to illuminate the institutional context surrounding the development of academic economics in Brazil in the late 1960s and early 1970s, in its relations to the deeper social and political currents in effect at the time.

Keywords: Ford Foundation; University of Brasília; sociology of the economics profession; Kalman Silvert; Edmar Bacha. (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: B20 A14 A23 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-his
Date: 2015-09
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