The AAMIGA Project

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Advancing Academe: A Multidimensional Investigation of Geography in the Americas (AAMIGA)

This award from the National Science Foundation’s International Research Fellowship Program supported a twelve-month research effort by Dr. Patricia Solis to work with Dr. Rodrigo Tarté at the City of Knowledge in Panama and with Dr. Douglas Richardson at the Association of American Geographers in Washington, D.C.

As producers of knowledge in a globalized society, scientists and scholars must reckon with an increasingly interconnected world, prompting research-oriented organizations including the NSF to promote international research collaboration (IRC) as a means to build intellectual capacity and increase competitiveness. Despite widespread recognition of the increasing importance of IRC, there have been surprisingly few systematic studies that measure its extent, assess its spatial patterns, account for place-specific context, or articulate connections among local-national-regional dimensions of collaboration. The literature also overlooks the influence that disciplinary professional societies exert toward facilitating productive IRC.

Thus the overall goal of the project is to systematically and holistically investigate the dynamics of IRC through a multi-dimensional study of geography in the Americas. Results will be broadly disseminated and used by the Association of American Geographers, Dr. Solis’ home institution, upon return, to advance the intellectual and developmental impact of academic geography in our increasingly interconnected world. Specific objectives are:
1) To discover, articulate and communicate IRC among geographers in the US, Canada, Central America and the Caribbean, and South America;
2) To explore place-specific contexts of IRC activities; and
3) To assess the role of the professional society for facilitating IRC.

Dr. Solis’ technical approach is a systematic, integrated mixed-methodology including departmental surveys, scholar questionnaires, spatial analysis using a Geographic Information System (GIS) to understand regional patterns of IRC, a case study comprising data gathered through historical research, interviews, focus groups and participant observation, and effectiveness evaluation methods. As a rigorous, original study of IRC in geography, the project itself is designed as a collaborative international research endeavour. The foreign host institution, the City of Knowledge, represents one of the most outstanding centers for international collaboration in the Americas. This investigation of IRC through a multi-dimensional perspective of one discipline in one region can provide a model for understanding other fields and for NSF international programs. The project incorporates elements and methods that will ultimately facilitate IRC, including active engagement of participants from the region to promote capacity building, outcomes and deliverables to collaterally benefit US Spanish-speaking geography scholars, and involvement of the AAG to implement findings.

Download the full final grant report on the AAMIGA project submitted to NSF. December 2007.

thumb.jpg See the brochure produced to disseminate the results of the AAMIGA project. November 2007.
AAMIGABrochure.pdf (english)
AAMIGAesp.pdf (español)
AAMIGAport.pdf (português)
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/start/engflyer.pdf (english)
/start/spflyer.pdf (español)
/start/portflyer.pdf (português)
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