The symposium will look at the country's rapidly developing economy and place in the world in the context of its history, geography and politics. Current events and issues will be considered at a time when attention has been focused on the country through the World Cup and the Olympics.
Alan was the British Ambassador to Brazil between 2008 - 2013. joined the Diplomatic Service in 1978 and has served in the British Embassy in Amman, the United States and Germany. While in Brazil, he led five posts: the Embassy in Brasilia; Consulates-General in Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and Recife; and a Trade Office in Porto Alegre. During his period of office, he led a major UK effort to strengthen relations with both the large emerging economies and with Latin America. There was a sharp increase in Ministerial visits at this time, and increased support and encouragement for British business. The UK and Brazil agreed a Strategic Partnership with annual meetings led by Foreign Ministers to review and boost bilateral relations. His particular focus in Brazil was on working with British business, education and science.
An honorary life fellow of Gresham College, Professor Tim Connell is an Emeritus Foundation professor from City University, where he sat on Senate for many years. He is a graduate of Oxford, Liverpool and London universities, and has studied in Spain and Mexico. He also holds the degree of Doctor of Letters from City, University of London.
His particular interest is in the field of professional training for translators and interpreters, where he works closely with the Chartered Institute of Linguists, of which he is a Fellow and a Vice-President, and is a regular contributor to the professional journal The Linguist. He is a member of the All Party Parliamentary Languages Group, which he addresses with some regularity.
International education is another area of key concern. Tim is deputy chair of the international course board for ESCP Europe, (the French grande école based in Paris) which also covers London, Berlin, Madrid and Turin. He has had professional links with Latin America for many years, which has provided ample material for his classes on cultural communication and awareness.
He writes and broadcasts regularly on a wide range of themes relating to London, languages in the modern world and diverse cultural topics. He sits on an editorial board for Cambridge Scholars Publishing and has dealings with various publishers. In the past three years he has published chapters on livery companies in the City of London, languages and Brexit and was the lead writer for Get Smart About Scandals, a report on past lessons for future finance. He has just completed a revision of the history of Canning House, home to the Luso-Hispanic Brazilian Society, with which he has had an association for nearly forty years.
Tim has developed particular links in the Square Mile as a Freeman of the City of London and sits on the Court of the Stationers' Company where he is currently developing a policy on public access as part of the new Hall charity.
As a Fellow of Gresham College he sits on the Academic Board and has organised cycles of lectures in the Mondays at One series for 24 years, looking at topics of mainly current interest and speaks on a variety of subjects himself. He has devised half-day symposia on a wide range of themes with an invited panel of experts and is currently looking at the development of webinars. Since 2006 he has been Chairman of the Gresham Society, which supports Gresham College.
Maria Lúcia G. Pallares-Burke was Professor at the University of São Paulo and is now Research Associate of the Centre of Latin American Studies, University of Cambridge. She has worked on the cultural history of the European Enlightenment and its reception in Latin America, emphasizing a comparative approach to the circulation and reception of ideas. She also published two books about the Brazilian polymath and anglophile Gilberto Freyre, who is said to have discovered Brazil for the Brazilians in the 1930s: a study of his early years and, with Peter Burke, an intellectual portrait concerned with his whole lifetime. Her most recent book, O Triunfo do Fracasso (2012), is about the German friend of Freyre at Columbia University, Rüdiger Bilden, and his battle for the dissemination of the idea of Brazil as a "laboratory of civilization" and for the improvement of race relations in the USA.
Professor Pereira is currently Director of the Brazil Institute at King's College London. His current work concerns citizenship, human rights, public security, and state coercion in Brazil. This includes a study of the performance of a relatively new human rights institution, the police ombudsman, in two different states in Brazil, as well as an analysis of some recent efforts to reform the police. Anthony has been a member of the Executive Committee of the Brazilian Studies Association (BRASA) and is an occasional commentator for BBC Brazil.