Professor Elsa Stamatopoulou, Director of the Program on Indigenous Peoples' Rights at the Institute for the Study of Human Rights, led the 2017 Indigenous Studies Summer Program hosted by the Center for the Study of Ethnicity and Race (CSER).
The program provides an overview and analysis of the major questions in Indigenous affairs today, as they have emerged globally in the last decades, culminating at the adoption of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. The course is composed of lectures and workshops given by Columbia professors and invited presenters, including Ms. Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, the UN Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.
Additionally, participants and Professor Stamatopoulou were invited to visit the Mohawk Nation at Akwesasne where they met with officials of the Nation and representatives of local Indigenous organizations. Participants also visited the United Nations headquarters in New York and held discussions with UN officials.
The 2017 summer program participants represented 13 countries and 19 Indigenous nations.
Elsa Stamatopoulou joined Columbia in 2011 following 31 years of distinguished service at the United Nations dedicated to human rights. In 2003, she became the first Chief of the Secretariat of the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues in 2003.