Cuba, Oceania and a ‘Canberra Spring’ (2018)

Cuban engagement with Timor-Leste and the Pacific islands, particularly through powerful health cooperation programs, has helped reshape regional geopolitics. Most of the key initiatives came from the period when Fidel Castro was head of government, with strong continuity under Raúl Castro. The Caribbean island’s medical cooperation with Timor-Leste, from 2003 onward, was the most powerful and successful move, transforming the health system of that new nation. Continue reading “Cuba, Oceania and a ‘Canberra Spring’ (2018)”

Partnerships for self-determination: The Cuba-Timor health cooperation (2018)

This paper uses the Cuban Timor Leste health partnership to illustrate desirable principles in aid partnerships. For all its problems, Timor Leste has graduated one thousand doctors in the past decade, created clinics in all rural districts and has seen substantial improvements in some critical health indicators. Over this period, Cuba was by far the most important partner in health training and health services. We consider what it was about this partnership that facilitated substantial gains in both human capacity and human development. Continue reading “Partnerships for self-determination: The Cuba-Timor health cooperation (2018)”

From Havana to Quito: Understanding Economic Reform in Cuba and Ecuador (2016)

Cuba and Ecuador are very different countries, but they share a common history and are politically linked by principles of the progressive Bolivarian Alliance (ALBA) bloc. They are also engaged in quite distinct processes of political economic reform. In brief, Cuba is cautiously expanding its commercialisation while Ecuador is expanding its public sector. But there is more to it than that. Continue reading “From Havana to Quito: Understanding Economic Reform in Cuba and Ecuador (2016)”

Unlikely partners: Challenges for an Australia-Cuba collaboration in Pacific health (2014)

In June 2010, at a joint press conference in Perth, the foreign ministers of Australia and Cuba expressed their wish to work together in a range of areas, in particular health aid programs in the Pacific and Caribbean regions (AMFAT 2010). Australia-Cuba collaboration has its own logic: both countries have great capacity to assist the Pacific island nations, and there is always value to be found in genuine efforts at cooperation and complementarity. However the move also raises the question: how might these two very different systems work together, when they have such distinct aims and methods? Continue reading “Unlikely partners: Challenges for an Australia-Cuba collaboration in Pacific health (2014)”

The ‘Cuban model’ and its microeconomy (2014)

No productivist model of socialism has every existed in Cuba. Rather, the Cuban approach has drawn on a hybrid of ethical principles with some consistent strategic themes. Cuba’s socialist strategy has been reformulated quite flexibly, in relation to these principles and historical circumstances, and this flexibility seems to have been important in allowing Cuban socialism to adapt and survive. Continue reading “The ‘Cuban model’ and its microeconomy (2014)”

Timor’s New Doctors / Los Nuevos Médicos de Timor (2014)

By 2014, 800 Cuban-trained Timorese doctors had graduated in Timor Leste. They bring new values to the country, a Timorese ‘social medicine’. Continue reading “Timor’s New Doctors / Los Nuevos Médicos de Timor (2014)”

Chávez and American integration (2013)

This chapter explains the historical foundations of the large regional organisations built in Latin America in the early twenty-first century, and the critical role played by Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez. Without Chávez, the continent may not have seen ALBA (for Bolivarian Alliance for the Americas), UNASUR (for Union of South American Nations), or CELAC (for Community of Latin American and Caribbean States). Yet all these groupings have important historical antecedents, living memories embedded in the postcolonial and neocolonial history of the region. Continue reading “Chávez and American integration (2013)”

Not really Europeans / No son realmente europeos: Cuban doctors in the Pacific (2013)

Interviews with Cubans and Pacific Islanders participating in Cuban international health solidarity in the Pacific region. Continue reading “Not really Europeans / No son realmente europeos: Cuban doctors in the Pacific (2013)”

An army of white jackets: Graduation of 406 Timorese doctors (2012)

406 Timorese doctors graduate as a result of Cuban-East Timorese health cooperation. Continue reading “An army of white jackets: Graduation of 406 Timorese doctors (2012)”