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Research Activities

Research Projects

FY 2006/2007 Research Topic: 4-38
Educational Development in a Mexican Indigenous People's Region: The Case of Mixe, Oaxaca


In Mexico, indigenous peoples have appeared in the social and political arena as important protagonists as a result of the government's bilingual education policy which began in the 1970s. The policy has not only propagated the idea of biculturalism across the country but also created a solid layer of bilingual primary school teachers and their leaders, who have influenced people's social and political lives. Since the 1990s, growing international concerns over the welfare of indigenous peoples have provided advantageous settings for their movements, which tenaciously pursue education as one of their main demands. Thus, education is a key factor in understanding the Mexican indigenous peoples' socioeconomic and political situation.

This study attempts to depict analytically the educational development in an indigenous people's region, Mixe, Oaxaca, by relating the educational development processes to people's demands for education, socioeconomic changes in the region, and the governmental policies. Data used in the study are primarily from field surveys in which such methods as questionnaires answered by children and interviews with the related people are employed.

Studies concerning education of indigenous peoples are inclined to focus upon cultural aspects or make arguments from "essentialist" standpoints. This project, however, tries to approach the subject from a sociological viewpoint in order to obtain an understanding of indigenous peoples' educational development in a more general social science context.


June, 2006 - March, 2007


Members of the Research Project


  • The results will be submitted to Ajia Keizai in 2007.