Sunday, August 08, 2021

Reminder Please Consider Registering for the 31st Annual Conference of the Association for the Study of the Cuban Economy 12-14 August 2021 (Virtual)


Much has happened in (and around) Cuba in the last year.  Raúl Castro ceded formal power in the Cuban Communist Party (PCC) but remains very much in the background.  Fidel continues his transformation into a purely historical construct and useful fetish, COVID has created substantial challenges to the carefully constructed through essentially reactionary  efforts  of the political economic model to both stop time and to preserve a revolutionary moment that is becoming increasing mythic in character, the traditional tensions between intelligentsia and artists on the one hand and the vanguard on the other erupted in ways that have little precedent since the early 1960s, and mass protests erupted in July 2021 of a magnitude that had not been experiences in a generation.  Through all of this the vanguard has remained both paralyzed and committed to the past, the United States continues the policies of the Trump Administration but with the globally more palatable face of Joe Biden and the Democratic party vanguard apparatus, the fractured Cuban diaspora communities continue to separate as they are absorbed into the increasingly distinct ideological camps within which Cuba remains a sometimes useful but distinctly secondary object. In the meantime movements by all significant actors produce cavalcades of hope and analysis as each of these groups within and outside the Island invest tremendous energy in developing more fully formed expressions of hopes and dreams from out of the gestures, (small) movements, responses, and events occurring in the legal, societal, political, and economic fields.

These and more themes are the subjects to be considered during the course of the 31st Annual Conference of the Association for the Study of the Cuban Economy (ASCE). The Conference  continues to be held in virtual format through Zoom. This year there will be six traditional sessions.  In addition, given the fast pace of change, there will be two "open mic" sessions where participants may intervene to share their own views and engage in conversation about the key events that now shape conditions, events and politics in Cuba and abroad: (1) Economic and Political Context; (2) Tarea Ordenamiento and its Aftermath; (3) Open Mic Session: Cuba’s Economic Policy Options in Response to Current Crisis; (4) International Dimensions; (5) Cuban Political Economy Challenges; (6) Open Mic Session: The Cuban Crisis and American Policy Responses; (7) Agriculture; (8) The Last Wave: Recent Work on the Cuban Exodus.

Registration is open to individuals who are members of ACSE membership is fast and requires payment of an annual fee with discount for students and others. Alternatively those interested in the Conference may pay the Conference Fee. The single fee entitles individuals to register for one or all of the Conference events.

More information, including the Program, links to payment and registration sites follow below.


5 August 2021


Dear Members of the ASCE Community


I am delighted to invite you to register for each of the sessions of the upcoming 31st Annual Conference of the Association for the Study of the Cuban Economy.  This year all sessions are open only to individuals who are members in good standing of ASCE (and have paid their annual dues of $90.00), or who have paid the conference fee. Fee waivers are available to individuals who are seeking to access the Annual Conference events from Cuba (assuming internet connectivity is then available), or individuals who are credited members of the press.  Students may register for the Conference sessions for a reduced fee of $25.00.


As we have done for past virtual conferences, it is necessary to register for each session individually.  This year ASCE has organized six (6) sessions PLUS two “open mike” sessions during which participants are encouraged to exchange views on the current situation in Cuba and especially events after the eruption of protests on 11 July 2021.


Please click on the following links to register for those sessions you would like to join. PLEASE EITHER CLICK ON THE LINK OR COPY AND PASTE THE LINK ADDRESS TO YOUR BROWSER.








1. 9:45 AM – 12:00 PM  Opening Remarks—ASCE President; Session 1: Economic and Political Context. Chair: Gary Maybarduk, ASCE President; Carmelo Mesa-Lago, Professor Emeritus, University of Pittsburgh, “Key Economic and Social Factors That Provoked the Worst Cuban Economic Crisis since the 1990s and Subsequent Street Protests”; Jorge I. Domínguez, "The Triumphs and Failures of Bureaucratic Socialism in Cuba in 2018-2021"; Omar Everleny Pérez Villanueva, “La economía cubana: La Tarea Ordenamiento y su repercusión social”




2. 2:00 PM- 4:00 PM Session 2: Tarea Ordenamiento and its Aftermath. Chair: Joaquín Pujol, IMF retired; Luis R. Luis, “Inflation Trends and Devaluation in Cuba”; Ernesto Hernández-Cat“Expectations under a Fixed Exchange Rate Regime: An Imaginary Model of the Official Cuban Peso”; Gabriel Di Bella and Rafael Romeu, “Considerations on the Impact of Peso Unification in 2021”

Gabriel Di Bella, Rafael Romeu, and Nemanja Jovanovic, “What can we learn from Cuba’s Parallel Exchange Rate after currency unification?”




3. 7:30 PM – 9:00 PM Open Mic Session: Cuba’s Economic Policy Options in Response to Current Crisis Moderator: Luis Luis .Up to 3 experts to introduce topics to speak for five minutes each.  Members' responses are limited to 3 minutes each.








4. 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM Session 3: International Dimensions; Chair: Natalia Delgado, Columbia Law School; Silvia Pedraza and Carlos A. Romero, “Cuba and Venezuela Cooperation. Doctors for Oil: The Social Dimension of the Partnership”; Yvon Grenier, St. Francis Xavier University, “No Sanction: Explaining Canadian Foreign Policy toward Cuba”; Martin Palous, Florida International University, “Cuba in 2021: A Central European Point of View”





5. 2:00 PM- 2:15 PM; Session 4: Cuban Political Economy Challenges; Chair:  Jorge Esquirol, Florida International University; José Gabilondo, “Socialism 2.0: Rebuilding Cuba’s Post-Castro Economy”; Larry Catá Backer, “The 8th Congress of the Communist Party of Cuba and the Future of the Cuban Economic Model”; Vadim Grishin, “The 8th Congress of the CPC: Continuity vs. Reforms”

Soren Triff, “La trata de personas y la justicia transicional en la postura deliberativa digital de los artistas cubanos”.




6. 7:30 PM – 9:30 PM. Open Mic Session: The Cuban Crisis and American Policy Responses

Moderator: Gary Maybarduk; Up to 3 experts to introduce topics to speak for five minutes each.  Members' responses are limited to 3 minutes each.






7. 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM. Session 5: Agriculture; Chair: Felipe Manteiga; Olimpia Gómez-Consuegra and Tomás Depestre, “Producciٕón de Semillas Hortícolas: Actualizacion de Caso de Estudio en Cuba" 

William Messina, University of Florida, "Cuban Agricultural Production and Trade in the Midst of the COVID-19 Pandemic; Mario A. Gonzalez-Corzo, Lehman College, The City University of New York (CUNY), "Policy Measures to Incentivize Agricultural Production in Cuba after the 8th Party Congress."; Alonso Exposito Alvarez, “El minifundio rural: principal estructura agraria de Cuba desde la época precolombina hasta nuestros días”; Recordando a Pepín Alvarez. Comments by Francisco Proenza, William Messina, and Jorge Perez-Lopez.





8. 2:00 PM- 4:00 PM; Session 6: The Last Wave: Recent Work on the Cuban Exodus. Chair and discussant: Jorge Duany, Florida International University; Elaine Acosta González, Universidad Internacional de la Florida, “Permanencias y cambios en la ‘nueva’ migración cubana a Miami”

Yarimis Méndez Pupo, Universidad de Guadalajara, México, “¿Por qué se van los que se fueron? Un acercamiento a las motivaciones y expectativas de migrantes cubanos calificados de la oleada migratoria de los años 1995–2017”; Veronica Diaz, Florida International University, “The (Cuban-) American Dream of Post-Soviet Era Cuban Immigrants: Perceptions vs. Realities”; Denisse Delgado Vázquez, University of Massachusetts, Boston, “Cuban Newcomers: Their Economic Behavior and Political Motivations”.







As a reminder ASCE membership may be purchased by clicking on the following link (new members and memberships renewals):


For information about conference fees for the 31st Annual Conference, please contact the ASCE at


For registration information please contact me at


We look forward to seeing you virtually at the 31st Annual Conference.

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