RCA Sponsored Publications & Research

McHenry Library at UC Santa Cruz in Spring. Photo by UC Santa Cruz.

Faculty and graduate student affiliated with the Research Center for the Americas produce new knowledge and engage our world via their research. This published work adds to public debate, informs policy, and is used as teaching tools at and beyond UC Santa Cruz.

The RCA sponsors faculty research that result in ground-breaking books and journal articles and publishes brief scholarly commentaries called Open Forum as well as Research Reports for educators and the broader public. UCSC faculty, lecturers, and graduate students interested in proposing a submission to an RCA publication should review the publication requirements and email rca@ucsc.edu for more information.

The RCA maintains an archive of research reports and working papers dating back to 1993. 

RCA Sponsored Publications & Research


Precarity and Belonging: Labor, Migration, and Noncitizeship (Rutgers University Press, 2021) is an edited volume by UC Santa Cruz professors Catherine S. Ramírez, Sylvanna M. Falcón, Juan Poblete, Steven C. McKay, and Felicity Amaya Schaeffer. The chapters in this collection bring mobility, precarity, and citizenship together in order to explore the points of contact and friction, alongside a possible politics of commonality. This book emerged from discussions on migration and precarity at various RCA public events on Non-Citizenship funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation John E. Sawyer Seminar on the Comparative Study of Culture.


Unsettled Borders: The Militarized Science of Surveillance on Sacred Indigenous Land (Duke University Press, 2022) by Professor Felicity Amaya Schaffer explores the ongoing settler-colonial war over the U.S.-Mexico border from the perspective of Apache, Tohono O’odham, and Maya peoples. Professor Schaeffer traces militarized border surveillance as one that not only affects migrants, but also Indigenous struggles for autonomy and land.


Argentina in the Global Middle East (Stanford University Press, 2020) by Professor Lily Pearl Balloffet ties the region of Latin America to the Middle East. By focusing on transregional links, Professor Balloffet explores mobilities and alliances across space and time to understand diverse migration patterns globally. The RCA published an ArcGIS StoryMap about the book.

RCA Research Reports

Summer 2020

"Chile at the Threshold" by Human Rights Investigations Lab for the Americas, UC Santa Cruz students Yoselyne Cerros, Emma Chaidez, Monica Estrada Arias, Francesca Romeo, and Angie Valencia.

"Germán Aburto" by Monica Estrada Arias and research team Angie Valencia, Yoselyne Cerros, and Emma Chaidez and graduate student mentor Francesca Romeo.

"Human Rights Crisis in Chile: A Digital Inquiry" by Human Rights Investigations Lab for the Americas, UC Santa Cruz students Marian Avila Breach, Juan Castañon, Leo S. Fernandez, Kayla Gomez, Josue Perez-Hernandez, and Angie Valencia as well as the Human Rights Center at the University of California, Berkeley students Rachael Cornejo, Shakiba Mashayekhi, Gisela Perez de Acha, María Isabel Di Franco Quiñonez, Samantha Rubenstein, Danielle Cosmes, Lili Siri Spira,  Lily Lucero, Kellie Levine, and Eliza Hollingsworth.

Spring 2020

"Youth-led Civic Engagement and the Growing Electorate: Findings from the Central Valley Freedom Summer Participatory Action Research Project" by Veronica Terriquez, Associate Professor of Sociology, Randy Villegas student of Politics, and Roxanna Villalobos Ph.D. student of Sociology

Winter 2019

"Youth Participatory Budgeting in the Americas" by Jessica Taft, Associate Professor of Latin American and Latino Studies and Daniel Rodríguez Ramírez, graduate student of Psychology and designated emphasis in Latin American and Latino Studies.

RCA's Open Forum

Winter 2019

"Figuring out whether (and why and how and to whom) Institutions Matter" by Juan Diego Prieto, Ph.D. Candidate in Politics at UC Santa Cruz. 

"The Ebbs and Flows of a New Researcher in Oaxaca" by Candy Martínez, Ph.D. Candidate in Latin American & Latino Studies at UC Santa Cruz.

Fall 2018

"Chiapas, 2018: Aesthetics and Politics of Indigenous Autonomy" by T. J. Demos, Professor of History and Art and Visual Culture and Director of Center for Creative Ecologies.

"'If I Did Not Want To Come I Would Have Not Come': Finding Resistance in the Archives" by Bristol Cave-LaCoste, Ph.D. Candidate in History at UC Santa Cruz.