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Founded by Dr. Stefano Varese (now Professor Emeritus) in 1991, IRCA is a research wing of the UC-Davis Department of Native American Studies and has served as forum for debate, opinion, information and reflection on the comparative situation of indigenous peoples/Native Americans and their struggle for achieving higher levels of autonomy, sovereignty and self- determination. Through major grants from the Rockefeller Foundation and the Department of State, it has hosted numerous visiting scholars, organized occasional paper series, and built relationships with universities across Mesoamerica and South America. Under new shared leadership with Director Grandia, IRCA is becoming a nexus (both virtual and physical) where communities, NGOs, social movements, tribal governments can connect with scholars and find support for resistance and revitalization movements.

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