Chile in Perspective Webinar: Social Discontent, Political Representation and Covid-19

July 02, 2020

In this Santiago Center webinar, Vicky Murillo, Columbia University Professor of Political Science and Director of the Institute of Latin American Studies (ILAS), and Juan Pablo Luna, Professor of the Institute of Political Science and of the School of Government of Universidad Católica, carried out a candid analysis of the situation in Chile in the context of the health pandemic, protests and political processes in the rest of Latin America and the United States.

The Covid-19 outbreak in Chile forced “a parenthesis in social unrest, with the structural problems that the protest uncovered in an intense way… Chile had the conditions to manage the pandemic better, in terms of its supposed state capacity and its healthy economic status, but it has handled this pandemic poorly. I believe this has to do with the underlying structural problems which the October 18 protest [when social unrest erupted] laid bare,” said Luna.

In turn, Murillo added: “For me, Covid-19 is a type of pressure cooker, which uncovered the political and social discontent with which Latin America closed 2019… we must remember that the region ended the year with a deficit in legitimacy in its political systems, coupled with a deceleration in growth and an accumulation of corruption scandals.”

The event - moderated by Paula Molina, journalist of Radio Cooperativa – was sponsored by Universidad Católica, ILAS, Instituto Milenio Fundamentos de los Datos, and the Santiago Center.