Call for Papers/ Save the Date AISA Conference

Save the Date

Call for Papers

 13th Annual American Indian Studies Association Conference

Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona

February 2-3, 2012

 Conference Theme:

Making the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Work

for Tribal Communities

For over thirty years indigenous peoples from around the world sought to negotiate an international document that recognized indigenous human rights.  The UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) was passed by the United Nations General Assembly on September 13, 2007.  The document introduced emphasis on collective human rights as an avenue for indigenous peoples to assert protections and recovery of land, culture, government, intellectual property, language, art, civil rights, education rights, employment, health, and other issues.  Indigenous peoples recovered tools to combat discrimination and marginalization.  The passage of the UNDRIP by the UN General Assembly is a moral document, and is not enforceable, except by the agreement and willingness of the nation states that accept the declaration.  The implementation and interpretation of the UNDRIP is left to individual nation states to decide and implement.  Nation states can support the UNDRIP by enacting and enforcing laws that support the letter and intent of UNDRIP.  Indigenous peoples need to be informed, supported, mobilized and willing to negotiate with nations states to acknowledge and uphold their collective human rights.  Indigenous individuals and tribal communities need to understand how to implement the articles of the declaration for their legal, political, and cultural benefit.


The theme of the conference is to explain, understand, implement, and critique the UNDRIP.  What are its strengths?  What are the possible ways of implementing the articles of UNDRIP?  Are there case studies of successful implementation of UNDRIP?  Are there developing legal practice and case law about UNDRIP actions?  What are the weaknesses of implementing UNDRIP?  What are the prospects for implementation of UNDRIP locally, nationally and internationally?  What are tribal interpretations of UNDRIP?  Do tribal communities and peoples believe that UNDRIP represents their interests?  How do tribal communities want to see UNDRIP implemented to protect their land, cultures, and forms of self-government?



The organizers of the AISA Conference welcome proposals for paper presentations, panel presentations, and workshops on the following topics:

The Indigenous Peoples’ Movement

History of the UNDRIP

Cases Studies of Implementation of UNDRIP

Legal Cases Utilizing UNDRIP

Indigenous Intellectual Property Rights

Civil Rights, Human Rights, and the UNDRIP

Tribal Perspectives on Specific Articles of UNDRIP

Land Rights and UNDRIP Protections

Education Rights and UNDRIP

Language Preservation and UNDRIP

Employment and UNDRIP

Health and UNDRIP

Self-Government and UNDRIP

Nation State Reform and UNDRIP

American Indian Studies Implementing UNDRIP Programs

Any panel related to UNDRIP Issues

Any panel concerning Indigenous Issues

Please send paper and panel submissions to:


Elizabeth P. Martos, Coordinator

American Indian Studies

P.O. Box 874603

Arizona State University

Tempe, AZ  85287-4603




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