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Building Research Communities And Collaborative Networks In Latin America And The Caribbean: Laccei Vision And Initiatives

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2009 Annual Conference & Exposition


Austin, Texas

Publication Date

June 14, 2009

Start Date

June 14, 2009

End Date

June 17, 2009



Conference Session

International Initiatives, Partnerships, Teaching Strategies & Collaborative Networks (IUCEE, IFEES, LACCEI.... )

Tagged Division


Page Count


Page Numbers

14.296.1 - 14.296.20



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Paper Authors


Ivan Esparragoza Pennsylvania State University

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Ivan E. Esparragoza is an Associate Professor of Engineering at Penn State. His interests are in engineering design education, innovative design, global design, and global engineering education. He has introduced multinational design projects in a freshman introductory engineering design course in collaboration with institutions in Latin America and the Caribbean as part of his effort to contribute to the formation of world class engineers for the Americas. He is actively involved in the International Division of the American Society for Engineering Education and in the Latin American and Caribbean Consortium of Engineering Institution (LACCEI) as Vice-President for Research. His email is

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Maria M. Larrondo Petrie Florida Atlantic University

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Dr. Maria Larrondo Petrie is a Professor and Associate Dean in the College of Engineering and Computer Science at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, Florida. She is the Executive Director of the Latin American and Caribbean Consortium of Engineering Institutions (LACCEI) and Vice President of the International Federation of Engineering Education (IFEES). She serves on the boards of the International, Minorities-in-Engineering, and Women-in-Engineering Divisions of the American Society of Engineering Education (ASEE). Her research focuses on modeling complex systems, security, and pedagogy. Her email is

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Building Research Communities and Collaborative Networks in Latin America and the Caribbean: LACCEI Vision and Initiatives


Many engineering education organizations and agencies exist world-wide at the international, regional, national, and local levels. Some of them have specific initiatives conceived to provide capacity building. The need to identify, develop and execute activities directed to advance skills and competencies of engineers and improve process and community infrastructures is calling for engineering education organizations, industry, government and academia to share perspectives, resources, and expertise to effectively and efficiently meet these challenges. This paper aims to document the perspectives and current initiatives of the Latin American and Caribbean Consortium of Engineering Institutions, LACCEI. It also describes future initiatives that require collaborations with other organizations, with the hope that these collaborations can materialize, and progress can be made to develop global engineers for the Americas. In October 2006, LACCEI initiated an Engineering Collaboration Agreement for the Americas that has been signed by seven multinational organizations; the results obtained during the first two years and how other organizations can join the agreement is also described.


There is an awareness and growing commitment for capacity building in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC). The region is interested in developing a competitive model by enhancing the knowledge, skills and competencies of its human capital, and by improving the use of resources and process not only to survive but also to be gung ho in the rapidly changing world. Since engineering plays a central role in building knowledge-based economies, a key factor in regions becoming and remaining globally competitive, there is a particular interest in educating engineers with a new set of skills and competencies so they can contribute to the economic and social growth of the nations on this hemisphere while they develop technology and transfer the knowledge through the region.

Changes in the global economy, especially the importance of moving to a knowledge-based economy1, have changed the role of the engineer and engineering education in the 21st century. This comes at a time when there is a shortage of engineers and a decreased interest of students to study engineering. The global market and outsourcing has changed the skills required of engineers. The engineer now has to “think globally and act locally” in order to bring global jobs to their region and be able to adapt products to the global market. Preparing these global engineers requires a shift in paradigm in their formation.

In 2006, Continental Corporation funded the first scientific global engineering study conducted by eight prestigious universities around the world2. The study resulted in four recommendations: (1) A key qualification of engineering graduates must be global competence; (2) Transnational mobility for engineering students, researchers, and professionals needs to become a priority;

Esparragoza, I., & Larrondo Petrie, M. M. (2009, June), Building Research Communities And Collaborative Networks In Latin America And The Caribbean: Laccei Vision And Initiatives Paper presented at 2009 Annual Conference & Exposition, Austin, Texas. 10.18260/1-2--5031

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2009 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015