Other activities


My first daughter was born. She is driven like her mom and funny like me.

Our first kitty died. Moonie had been with Hannah for over 11 years.


Part of my goals this year is to read my great-granddad poetry books. He was the physician Carlos Fletes Sáenz. I learned this year that his books can be found at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. Two interesting facts about him: 1) he received the Orden del Quetzal, the country´s highest honor in 1959; 2) together with Miguel Ángel Asturias, the Guatemalan Nobel prize, he collaborated to create the Universidad Popular back in 1923. You can read some of his poems here (this section is in Spanish).

A lunch conversation with my fellow PhD candidate, David Morar, turned into a post: "What is a hot dog?". Coming from Guatemala, the land of the shukos and the mixtas, I had some strong opinions on the topic.

I learned that a 3,000 piece-puzzle and a cute cat should not be too close together. Updated: it´s also a problem if she is close to the ceramic owls (see post below).

I am devoting some time to read theater plays. I´m reading 1950s-1960s Latin American plays and also German Expresionism.

The fragility of the ceramic owl was recently tested, as the post below shows:


In August 2017 I was invited to participate in a webinar organized by the Secretary of Economic Integration of Central America (SIECA) on "Central American Competitiveness: challenges and priorities to develop an industrial policy agenda. Here is the video.

Previous years

The summer of 2016, I interviewed a few Guatemalan Presidential Candidates. This was a project developed by Prolíderes, a youth association, and Poderosas, a women association. I had the opportunity to interview the current President, Jimmy Morales, and also the runner-up, Sandra Torres.

My first experience obtaining a grant was between 2009 and 2010. The Community of Madrid funded a project to promote entrepreneurship and citizenship among secondary-level students. Together with Edwin Xol and Hugo Maul we conducted interviews of inspirational young Guatemalans (one currently is head of the Labor Department), and travel around the country to allow secondary-level students to meet them and interact with them. Here is the book and a video showing the activites conducted.

I was President of the Vote Receiving Board #514 in 2011 Guatemalan elections

For a few months, in 2009, before leaving Guatemala to study my MPP, I was co-hosting a radio show to discuss economic policies. It was Radio Infinita. The show was named "Tiro Libre". Hugo Maul was my co-host.

I was the treasurer of Rotaract Club Guatemala Centro in 2009.

Under my leadership, the Public Policy class that was taught by different research members of CIEN moved from developing a desk research to developing grassroot organizational experience. Students worked with rural and urban neighborhoods to understand their needs, organized activities to collect funds, and organized activities to gian the trust of the community. This took place between 2006 & 2009.

In the late 1990s I was writing poetry.

Back then I also had the opportunity to participate in the Guatemalan Secondary School Science Competition (Olimpiadas de la Ciencia), organized by Universidad San Carlos de Guatemala (USAC). I ranked first in the nation in Physics, Chemistry, and Natural Sciences.