LabSIC work in Latin America
Coordinator : Alix Bénistant
Latin America represents a geographical area of major interest for the LabSIC, due to the relatively recent development of cultural industries in most Latin American countries and the accelerated character of industrial and financial changes in several key sectors.
LabSIC has been particularly interested in the publishing sector, which is in a specific situation in these countries due to the high degree of capital concentration, especially of foreign origin, the weakness of public intervention and a distribution network that is particularly undeveloped and not very homogeneous over vast territories. Globalization is at work here, with the large Spanish and American groups controlling a large part of the market, while at the same time there is a weakness in intra-continental trade despite the fact that many of these countries share a common language.
This particular context has undoubtedly contributed to the emergence of the movement for the defense of editorial “bibliodiversity”, particularly in Chile, where groups of independent publishers have organized since the end of the 1990s to try to promote public policies on books inspired by the French model.
LabSIC’s expertise in the field of cultural and creative industries is a major asset in the partnerships and projects developed with several South American countries. This expertise is evident both in Theme 1 on cultural and creative industries, with its emphasis on reconfigurations and emerging logics, and in Theme 2 on the circulation of discourses and models in the public space, particularly around the defense of cultural diversity. This expertise also focuses on the conditions of emergence and the modes of action of new actors in the cultural sector, thus extending to this South American space a trend of work initially developed in France and which is now also being pursued in several European countries.
Several collaborations have been established with different partners: the Institute of Communication and Image of the University of Chile; the National Council of Culture and Arts (equivalent to the French Ministry of Culture); the Association of Independent Publishers Editores de Chile, the University of Chile and the French Institute in Santiago. Initially, these collaborations took the form of conferences organized by the LabSIC and its partners. They then gave rise to several theses (some of which were co-supervised) currently underway or defended by Chilean students (on the analysis of policies related to cultural mediation), Colombian students (on the video game industry and the notion of product identity; on the modes of action of independent publishers in Colombia, Chile and Argentina; on the emergence of transmedia narratives in Colombia; on territorial approaches to cultural and artistic policies) and Brazilian students (on the practices of information production related to social protest movements in Brazil; on transformations in the business model of the music production chain).
Finally, these collaborations continue through the involvement of the LabSIC in comparative expertise work on public policies and cultural diversity between academics, professionals, and public actors.
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