Saturday, October 27, 2007

Anthro Conference Focuses on IP Governance

Anthro conference focuses on IP governance

Nung Aljani/MindaNews
Saturday, 27 October 2007 08:17

ZAMBOANGA CITY (MindaNews/26 October) – Governance among Indigenous Peoples (IP) is the main theme of the three-day annual conference of the national anthropological association Ugnayang Pang-Aghamtao, Inc. (UGAT) at the Ateneo de Zamboanga University here.

In his message at the opening rites Thursday, UGAT President Jose Eleazar Bersales said the conference also aims to help the seemingly “damaged Philippine culture,” which he added many observers still write as subjects in weblogs and the public opinion pages of newspapers.

“This is the opportunity for anthropologists as well as our colleagues in the social sciences who are also presenting papers in this conference, to come together to share what new knowledge has been generated to help provide critical understandings of how Filipinos deal with or exercise power and authority – of the task thereof – whether as one nation or as individuals, groups or communities,” he added.

ADZU President Fr. Antonio F. Moreno, the conference host, added the theme is just “timely to strengthen dialogues between the state and ethnic groups and communities (in the country).”

The conference is also important to educators and learners because “they share in the spirit of transformative learning. The value of socio-cultural anthropology is that it concerns itself with all the dimensions of humanity,” he said.

Participants in the annual conference include UGAT members, researchers, anthropologists, academicians, IP leaders, representatives from civil society groups and local government employees.

Among the papers presented are the studies conducted by top researchers in the country particularly on aspects of state power and its impact on particular groups, down to the enduring practices and authority systems among indigenous communities.

The three-day conference is divided into eight sessions, focusing on issues like IP governance, conflict resolution and peace-building, customary justice system, asserting citizenship and entitlements, urban governance, eco-governance and heritage, ethnography of state violence

Topics include “Shedding Blood, Preventing Bloodshed: Conflict Resolution among the Lumad” by Xavier University’s Jay Ray G. Alovera; “Customary Justice System among the Iraya Mangyans of Mindoro” by University of the Philippines’ (UP) Aleli B. Bawagan; “Tiyawan: The Teduray Justice System” by Institute of Bangsamoro Studies’ Abhoud Syed Lingga and Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao’s Fatima Kanakan and “Maranao Customary Justice System” by Abdul Hamidullah Atar of Reconciliatory Initiatives Development Opportunities (RIDO) Inc.

Other topics are “Interest and Voices: Indigenous Governance in the 21st Century Philippines” by Dina Marie B. Delias of National University of Singapore’s Asian Research Institute; “Mainstreaming of Bodong Matagoan” by Mary Constancy Barrameda of the Diocese of Marbel; “An Anthropological Inquiry into the Governance of Conflict” by Aileen Toohey of the University of Peace; “The Syncretic Policy: Transformation in Political Action Repertoire among MNLF Returnees in Palawan” by University of Sto. Tomas’ Maria Carinnes P. Alejandria; “Bangsamoro Self-Determination” Abhoud Syed Lingga; “Seeking Sanctuary” by Kathryn A. Poethig of California State University; “Tolerance of Torture in Military Training Camps” by Marites C. Caballero of UP; “Visualizing State Violence in the Philippines” by Rosa Castillo and Riza Jopson of UP; “Pagsilip sa Isang Buhay Lider Estudyante” by UP’s Roxanne Gale R. Villaflor.

The conference will also feature “Ifugao Mountain Terraces: Monument of the Ifugao Political System in Antiquity?” by Ateneo de Manila University’s Michael Armand P. Canilao; “The Bugang River Tour: A Community-Based Ecotourism Project in Local Governance” by ADMU’s Nagai Hiroko; “Stakeholders’ Perception on the Impact of Donsol’s Butanding (Whale Shark) Ecotourism Project: Policy Implications for Sustainability and Human Security” by Herbert B. Rosana of Bicol University; “The La Mesa Dam(ned):Strategies in Water Resource Management” by UP’s Annabelle B. Bonje and Joy Raquel R. Tadeo; “The Practice of Corporate Social Responsibility in Low-Income Community: The Case of Tubig Para sa Baranggay Program of the Manila Water Company, Inc. in Sitio Kaingin II, Baranggay Pansol” by Marian Rica O. Lodripas of UP; “Community Coastal Resource Management: A Case Study of Mariveles Bataan” by Andrew Lou L. Mungcal; “Establishing the Legal Framework and Need for Social Justine in the Implementation of Energy and Development Projects in the Philippines for Sustainable Development” by Jay L. Batongbacal of Dalhousie Law School; “The Turtles Island Heritage Protected Area: The Paradox of Conservation” Rolando C. Esteban of UP; “The ATOB (stone tidal weirs) of the Ryukyus, Pescadores , and Visayas Self-governance from relics of maritime megalithic civilization” by Cynthia N. Zayas of UP; “The Role of Academe in People Empowerment: The Case of Cienda-San Vicente Farming Association (CSVFA), Baybay, Leyte” by Visayas State University’s Merlito Jose M. Bande, Pia Fluer Khristine M. Noriel and Jimmy Pogosa; “School Dropout: Power and Accountability in Basic Education” Julian E. Abuso of UP; “ICT and the Anthropology of Communication” by ADMU’s Raul Pertierra; and “Ethnicity as Performance: IPRA and its Implications for Formations of Ethnic Identities at the Rio Tuba Nickel Project, Bataraza, Palawan” by Christine Joyce Ajoc and Audrey Dawn Tomada of UP.

Besides the plenary sessions, there are also poster presentations on the same theme simultaneously running at the sidelines of the conference.

UGAT is an anthropological group established to promote closer working relationship among its members to help in the solution of socio, cultural and governance-related problems in the country.

This year’s annual conference is its 29th since 1978. (Nung Aljani/Mindanews)

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Critiquing Governance

Critiquing Governance
Cebu Daily News / Opinion
Past Forward

By Joeber Bersales
Cebu Daily News
First Posted 12:06pm (Mla time) 10/25/2007

Tolerance of Torture in Military Camps,” “Shedding Blood, Preventing Bloodshed: Conflict Resolution Among the Lumad,” “Visualizing State Violence in the Philippines,” “Bangsamoro Self-determination,” “The Practice of Corporate Social Responsibility in Low-Income Communities,” “The Turtle Islands Heritage Protected Area: The Paradox of Conservation.”

These are just some of the 26 papers that will be presented today and tomorrow in a national meeting of Philippine anthropologists at the Ateneo de Zamboanga University with the theme, “The Practice of Governance.” The event is co-hosted by AdZU, together with Ugnayang Pang-Aghamtao, Inc. or UGAT, the professional association of anthropologists in the Philippines. This is Ugat’s 29th annual national conference and the ninth time to be held in Mindanao.

One of the highlights of this two-day conference is the launching this afternoon of the book “Rido: Clan Feuding and Conflict Management in Mindanao”, a collection of studies on the phenomenon written by anthropologists and other social scientists and funded by the Asia Foundation.

The conference comes amidst a week marked by a lessening of tensions following indications that the Glorietta blast was an unfortunate and avoidable accident. Zamboanga as a conference site was almost called off at the height of tensions in Basilan and Sulu in July because some thought that the violence there might spill over in the form of bombs planted in malls and public places here in what is dubbed as the “Latin City of the Philippines.” Like General Santos and Cotabato, this city has been caught in the crossfire in years past due to the intermittent skirmishes that have marked much of Muslim Mindanao since time immemorial.

* * *
This gathering of anthropologists also comes 20 years since the Atlantic Monthly published James Fallows’ scathing essay on the failure of governance in the Philippines, which he traced to what he phrased as a “damaged culture.” Many social scientists and political pundits, stung by the rebuke from a journalist who spent merely two months in a country barely a year out of two decades of dark authoritarian rule, quickly protested what they saw as a wanton trampling of recently-regained Philippine pride. In between those years we have gone through three presidencies and are going through a fourth one, which ought to help prove or disprove this “culture-as-culprit” thesis.

UGAT has rightfully chosen to tackle the practice of governance as the conference theme this year not so much in celebration of the damaging Fallows diatribe, of course, but to come together to share what new knowledge has been generated to help provide critical understanding of how Filipinos deal with or exercise power and authority – or the lack thereof – whether as one “nation” or as individuals, groups or communities.

* * *
In my message for the souvenir program as national president of UGAT, I urged my colleagues and the general public to attend the meeting since this is a vital opportunity to see how anthropologists and other social scientists tackle governance at various arenas of practice: from governance writ large as the apparatus of the State vis-à-vis particular geographic regions or of particular aspects of State power and its impacts on particular groups, down to enduring practices and authority systems among indigenous communities.

Anthropologists, whether as critical academicians or as advocates for indigenous rights and welfare, have reason to take stock of the phenomenon of governance. For much may have changed during the last two decades since the end of the Marcos dictatorship yet so little is felt by the everyday person in what one social historian has referred to as this “changeless land.”

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Aghamtao 16

Aghamtao: Journal of the Ugnayang Pang-Aghamtao, Inc. (UGAT) / Anthropological Association of the Philippines
Volume 16 / 2007


To be uploaded soon

Table of Contents:

Natural Born Sailors? Reconsidering Stereotypes of Filipino Global Seafarers
Olivia Swift

From Real to Virtual: Ethnography of an On-Line Community
Zona Hildegrade S. Amper

Chismax to the Max: The Celebrity Gossip Economy
Marian C. Reyes

A Black Box-Tinkering Pedagogy
Myfel Joseph Paluga
Norberto Navarrete, Jr

Konserbasyon ng Pamana at ang Antropolohisto sa Panahon ng Globalismo
Rozanno Rufino

Download Article Here:


Personal Collection

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

UGAT 29th Annual Conference - The Practice of Governance

Anthropological Association of the Philippines

29th Annual Conference
“The Practice of Governance”
25 to 27 October 2007, Ateneo de Zamboanga University
Sponsor: Philippine Social Science Council and Ateneo de Zamboanga University

“Governance” issues are typically regarded as falling within the purview of political science, economics, sociology, and public administration. Without diminishing the contributions of these disciplines in the development of perspectives to understand and explain the administration of access to and provision of rights, services, and goods, anthropology looks at the interactions of state and non-state organizations. These include the way these interactions are shaped and redefined by strategies and subjectivities of agents pursuing various interests and agenda, including their intended and unintended consequences. At the same time, anthropology views regimes of governance as mediated by culturally and historically constituted (trans)local processes of ordering and regulating all areas of contemporary social life. Accordingly, conference papers will revolve around the following themes:

  • conflict resolution and peace-building
  • customary justice system
  • asserting citizenship and entitlements
  • culture of corruption (with audit and performance)
  • urban governanceheritage (tangible, intangible, natural)
  • ethnography of state violence
  • governance and the regulation of kinship, gender and family
  • eco-governance


  • P1,800 (early registration until OCTOBER 12, 2007)
  • Please deposit registration fee to PNB CA#275-830432-1 and submit registration information (name, institutional affiliation, mailing address, home/office phone no., mobile no., e-mail address) and copy of deposit slip by fax (+63-2-9263993), e-mail ( or mail (UGAT Office, Philippine Social Science Bldg., Commonwealth Ave., Quezon City). Registration forms can be downloaded at
  • P2,500 (regular registration, walk-in)
  • P2,250 (regular student rate, walk-in)

The registration fee covers the conference kit, half-day city tour, lunch and 2 snacks. Information on accommodations can be found at

For other inquiries, please contact UGAT at 0918-6989445 or at, or go to

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Dish-Unity Gatherings

"Dish-Unity Gatherings" are held in UP Diliman, and participated in by UGAT members and UP Anthropology Alumni. Many of the participants are applying Anthropological knowledge and concepts in diverse fields including art, education, theater and broadcasting, and are interested to discuss the value of Anthropology for the public. Topics covered sofar include the following:

July: "'Cutting Edge Anthropology' in the US" (a discussion on hierarchies and carreers in Anthropology Departments in the US with Dr. Martin Manalansan, formerly with the UP Department of Anthropology, now based in Illinois)

August: "Where are UP Anthropology Alumni Today?", "'Public Interest Anthropology' and the Huluga Case", "Landmarks in UGAT History"

September: "'Knowledge Production in Anthropology in UP Diliman', a survey of MA/PhD topics through the years" (presented by Eufracio Abaya)

November: "Paradoxes in Philippine Education: Views from Anthropology"

January: "Ethics and politics of Archaeological Heritage Conservation" , "More UGAT History"

February: "Huluga, Himulugan, and other sites of archaeological significance in Cagayan de Oro"

May 3, 2008: "The Politics of Knowledge Production and Consumption in Philippine Education: Insights from Anthropology"

The aim is to continue to hold these informal gatherings every third Saturday of the Month.

Monday, February 26, 2007

The Theories of Performances of the Musics of Asia

The U.P. College of Music
The U.P. Center for Ethnomusicology

in cooperation with the

Musical Arts and Research ManagementFoundation, Inc.
Office for Initiatives in Culture and the Arts
Musicological Society of the Philippines
Ugnayang Pang-Agham Tao, Inc.



Inter-Active Forum on the Musics from Burma, China, Indonesia, Iran, Japan, Singapore, Thailand, and the Philippines

8:00-5:00 pm
27-28 February 2007
Abelardo Hall Auditorium
University of the Philippines Diliman
Free Admission

The Symposium on "The Theories of Performances of the Musics of Asia" is a meeting of experts from Myanmar (Burma), Indonesia, Iran, Okinawa Japan, the Philippines, Singapore, and Thailand, to present and demonstrate the uniqueness of both Asian music performance practice from both traditional and contemporary perspectives. The symposium shall be conducted in a round-table exchange consist of semi-formal presentations as well as free-wheeling discussion among the experts (presenters, reactors, demonstrators) , with time allocations for openforum.

In 2002, the Center for Ethnomusicology hosted the Conference of the Asia-Pacific Society for Ethnomusicology with its theme: A Search for a New Theory of Music in Asia. This event generated a new awareness in viewing the musical cultures of Asia as truly a source of are thinking of musical values and understanding. The present event, though much more modest than the APSE conference, is intended to pursue the same goal. Having been authored by the founder of the UP Center for Ethnomusicology, National Artist José M. Maceda., this search for new understanding is partly to further substantiate his vision of a renaissance in the musics of Asia.