This course provides students with both a background to Cuba’s economic situation (from the 1959 Cuban Revolution to the present) as well as an on-the-ground look at the country’s emerging economic transition in the context of globalization. We will pay special attention to economic reform in Cuba surrounding the economic crisis of the 1990s using texts, tools, and methodologies from across the social sciences. The goal of the course is to equip participants with a well-rounded set of analytical tools that help them assess both Cuba’s economic situation in the 21st century as well as the scope and effectiveness of recent economic reforms the country has undertaken. This course offers students an intellectually stimulating, innovative, and diverse program of study in a safe environment, with maximum exposure to the economic, cultural, and political life of contemporary Cuba. The structure of this program revolves around guest lectures at Cuba’s premier academic institutions, class meetings, and relevant site visits.
Global Affairs (GLOA) 480: Study Abroad
Economics (ECON) 492: Study Abroad
Government (GOVT) 398: Study Abroad
Global Affairs (GLOA) 710: Seminar Abroad (only available for George Mason University students currently enrolled in the Masters in Global Affairs program)
Conflict Analysis (CONF) 695: Selected Topics
This program is open to all undergraduate and graduate students including students who do not attend George Mason University. Application Checklist
Double or triple occupancy in hotels/group housing.
Program Cost (Winter 2017): $4880
Tuition (3 credits)
Round-trip airfare from Miami to Havana
Accommodation (in Miami and Havana)
In-country transportation for program activities
Most meals (breakfast and dinner daily and additional meals as outlined below)
Local, English-speaking guide
International Emergency Insurance
Round-trip airfare to Miami
Group arrives in Miami, spends the night.
Fly from Miami to Havana. Welcome dinner.
Tour of Old Havana.
Morning Seminar: "The Economic Dynamic and Transformation Process in Cuba". Lecturer: Dr. Antonio F. Romero, professor at the Center for International Economy Research. An afternoon visit to a service cooperative in Havana.
Morning Seminar: "Current Cuban Foreign Trade: Obstacles and Perspectives". Lecturer: Mcs. Rosibel Hidalgo, professor at the Center for International Economy Research (CIEI). Visit and lunch at "Martini Restaurant": a conversation with the paladar owner.
Morning Seminar: "External Finance in Cuba: External Debt and the Access to Multilateral Resources". Lecturer: Dra. Mercedes García. Meeting with officials from the Cuban National Economist Association Consulting Firm (CANEC). In the evening, El cañonazo de las nueve at San Cristobal de La Cabana Fortress.
Morning Seminar: "Foreign Direct Investments in Cuba: Current Trends and Perspectives". Lecturer: Dra. Carola Salas Couce, professor at the Center for International Economy Researching (CIEI). In the afternoon, visit La Barriada and Focolares community project to see how local art can contribute to a neighborhood.
Morning Seminar: “Changes in Cuba's Families and Society as Part of the Economic Model Transformation”. Lecturer: Dra. Patricia Arés, professor at the Psychology School, University of Havana. Meeting with a group of students from the University of Havana.
Visit to an elderly home community project and a day trip to Guanabo Beach.
Las Terrazas day trip.
Morning Seminar: "Cuba's Health Care System: Experiences and Perspectives”. Lecturer: Dr. Luisa Íñiguez, associated professor at the Center for Human Welfare and Health Studies (Centro de Estudios de Salud y Bienestar Humano - CESBH). An afternoon visit to the Hermanos Saíz Association.
Morning Seminar: “Cuba - USA Relations: Current Status and Perspectives”. Lecturer: Dr. Carlos Alzugaray Treto, professor at CEHSEU. Visit to the Center for the Study of Cuban Youth.
Morning Seminar: "Cuban External Relations: The Role of China, Russia, and the European Union". Lecturer: Dr. Santiago Rodríguez, professor at the Center for International Policy Research (Centro de Investigaciones de Politíca Internacional - CIPI). Meeting and debate with a specialist on current Cuban policy on sexual diversity (CENESEX).
Morning Seminar: "Cuban Economic Relations with Latin American and Caribbean Nations". Lecturer: Dr. Marlen Sánchez Gutiérrez, professor at CIEI. Meeting with a group of students from the Higher Institute for International Relations (Instituto Superior de Relaciones Internacionales - ISRI).
Morning Seminar: "Cuba's Energy Sector Perspectives". Lecturer: Dr. Ramón Pichs Madruga, associated professor at CIEI. Farewell dinner at CIEI. Professors, students, and directors from University of Havana will join the party.
Depart for Miami.
*Instructor reserves the right to modify the course schedule as needed
** Indicates rolling admission application process. Applicants will be immediately notified of acceptance into this program and be able to complete post-decision materials prior to the term's application deadline.