*Original versión in Spanish.
In 2021, the Association of Universities entrusted to the Society of Jesus (AUSJAL) published the book "Crisis and Disenchantment with Democracy in Latin America". As a result of the success of this publication, the Observatory on Democracy in Latin America has been developed, an initiative led by the Universidad Católica Andrés Bello and financed in part through the permanent agreement between this institution and the Konrad Adenauer Foundation.
This project is conceived as a permanent research program on the problems of democracy in the region and has been carried out collaboratively by researchers from different universities in Latin America. The main objective of this initiative is to investigate those aspects that are not sufficiently addressed or investigated with the studies that are organized from the sources currently available such as: Latinobarómetro, The Economist, V-Dem, Lapo, Freedom House, Polity V, among others.
The Observatory aspires to offer the national and international academic communities, as well as the national political leadership and the interested public, three types of products:
1) Annual studies and reports on the factors that produce crises in the democracies of the region and of the different levels of resilience in each country, based on sample opinion polls.
2) Aggregate and comparative data analysis reports for the entire region.
3) Extraordinary reports on the analysis of particularly relevant cases and events of special relevance.
As previously mentioned, the program will include researchers designated by the universities that decide to participate in this initiative, as well as a general director who will be responsible for the general management of the program, a position designated by the president of AUSJAL. A research director will also be appointed (a position designated by mutual agreement between the president of AUSJAL and the General Secretary) who will be assigned to one of the participating universities and will be responsible for the general coordination of the work of the participating teams, as well as supervising the tasks of design, collection and general analysis of information produced through field work (annual surveys of the Observatory for all of Latin America). These figures are accompanied by a technical committee appointed by the General Director and the Research Director from among the researchers designated by the participating universities, which establishes the observatory's policies, annual work plan and budget.
At the last IAJU Board of Directors meeting, Father General Arturo Sosa congratulated AUSJAL for the work done by the association in promoting the observatory of democracy in Latin America. Father General, who was a founding member of the organization, expressed his heartfelt support to AUSJAL and highlighted the collaboration that exists among AUSJAL members as an example for collaboration among universities worldwide.