Maria Portugal

​Maria Portugal examines the renewal of social models challenged by climate change. To this end, she is studying the contribution of indigenous peoples, particularly from the Amazon, to the development of sustainable solutions to the climate challenge in terms of environmental justice. In this context, she draws on her experience as a member of the UN working group in charge of drafting the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples adopted in 2007, as well as on the various international legal instruments that recognize indigenous peoples as guardians of Nature, and the constitutions of Bolivia and Ecuador, which enshrine the rights of Nature and Buen Vivir (Sumak Kawsay, Suma Kamana).

Its framework for study is based on the common good and draws on the teachings of the Church\’s social doctrine, the encyclicals Laudato Si, Fratelli Tutti and the post-synodal apostolic exhortation Dear Amazon. In this respect, she pays particular attention to the role of women and indigenous women in particular. 

Her focus on this theme is accompanied by the design and implementation of dedicated projects to find solutions to the problems identified, particularly in the field of teaching and multidisciplinary research, in conjunction with the Amazonian University Program (PUAM), for example.

She is studying the ecological transition in Spanish- and French-speaking Jesuit universities in order to identify whether this approach concerns only the universities or involves other sectors in the territory. 

Maria is taking part in the UNESCO working group on the Decade of Indigenous Languages (2022-2032), which aims to propose solutions to prevent their disappearance. 

As Senior of the \”Justice and Agriculture\” village, Maria is helping to raise awareness, among the public and young people in particular, of the Pope\’s call in May 2019 for an inclusive, solidarity-based economy.

Education: Master’s degree in Clinical Psychology, Postgraduate degrees in Ethnology studies (indigenous peoples transculturation, rights, economic development issues) and History (territories and frontiers) from the University of Paris.

Her motto is: \”Strength and Light.”

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