On June 4, the Center for Development and the Environment at the University of Oslo, and WOLA collaborated on a virtual symposium to launch the special issue of the European Review of Latin American and Caribbean Studies, guest edited by Benedicte Bull and Antulio Rosales.

The first panel (video above) was entitled “Democratic deterioration and the prospects for a negotiated solution.” It started with Antulio and Benedicte discussing their introduction to the special issue, followed by Francisco Alfaro discussing the various coalitions and actors on each side of the conflict and their attitudes and strategies towards negotiations. Leiv Marsteintredet followed with an explanation of why a negotiated transition is so difficult in Venezuela.  Javier Corrales described the progressive deterioration of Venezuela’s electoral institutions during Chavismo, and we presented our paper conceptualizing the possibilities for peacemaking in Venezuela’s intractable conflict.

The second panel was called “Economic and Security Crises in a Changing World Order.” Natalia Gan discussed Venezuela’s citizen security crisis. Tom Legler looked at why multilateral actors have been so ineffective with respect to Venezuela. A story within a story: Venezuela’s crisis, regional actors, and Western hemispheric order upheaval. Alejandro Cardozo Uzcátegui and Víctor Mijares looked at the geopolitical intersts and corruption involved in the Russia-Venezuelan relationship, and Benedicte and Antulio ended discussing the way sanctions have distorted Venezuela’s private sector and made it less autonomous vis-a-vis the government.