Contact: Mexico Institute


November 7, 2014

Washington, DC - The Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars has announced the appointment of Josefina Vázquez Mota as a Public Policy Scholar with the Mexico Institute. Vázquez Mota will work closely with the Mexico Institute on issues of the border, migration, and migrants through her project "DREAMers: the Next Dream." Her work will focus on sharing stories of struggle and success of young Mexicans who came to the United States as children and now have become beneficiaries of DACA and strong supporters of comprehensive immigration reform. The project will gather those stories and analyze their impact on public policy on both sides of the border.

"Josefina Vázquez Mota has been one of the most important figures in Mexican politics for over a decade, and her knowledge and experience will provide the Wilson Center with a strong foundation as we look towards the mid-elections in 2015. Moreover, her passion for increasing public understanding of immigrants and their role in society will be invaluable to us during her stay as the Mexico Institute continues its mission to provide insight and analysis into the most important issues in the bilateral relationship," said Duncan Wood, Director of the Mexico Institute. 

Each year, the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars hosts around 160 scholars who conduct independent research on national and/or international issues addressing key public policy challenges. Through its scholars, the Center enriches crucial policy debates and provides a platform for scholars in the tradition of President Wilson to bring the worlds of policy and ideas together. In addition to its flagship international fellowship program, the Center also hosts scholars through its individual programs.

Josefina Vázquez Mota is an economist and adviser to the Inter-American Development Bank. She was the first female presidential candidate for Mexico's PAN (Partido Acción Nacional) party in 2012. She began her career in politics in 2000 as a federal representative for the PAN. Soon after, she was invited by President Fox to join his cabinet as Secretary of Social Development. She promoted the first General Law on Social Development that established the National Council for the Evaluation of Social Politics. In 2006, she was invited to be the Secretary of Public Education. Before her political career, Vázquez Mota worked as a journalist on economic topics for Novedades de MéxicoEl Financiero, and El Economista. She has an economics degree from Universidad Iberoamericana. In 2014, she published a book entitled El sueño que unió la frontera: Mexicanos que triunfan en Estados Unidos (The Dream that United the Border: Mexicans who Triumph in the United States). Her book is an analysis of over 60 interviews she conducted with Mexican immigrants living in the United States.