AUSTIN, Texas — The University of Texas at Austin’s research on some of society’s most pressing challenges will be a prominent driver of collaborative discussion on an international stage at La Feria Internacional del Libro de las Universitarias y los Universitarios 2023, known popularly as FILUNI. UT Austin is the first university from the United States to participate as guest of honor at the event, which is expected to attract more than 35,000 participants from 10 countries. This multinational book fair and conference will take place Aug. 29–Sept. 3 on the campus of one of the premier universities in Latin America, the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México in Mexico City.
“Academic institutions produce positive societal change by creating environments that bring together talented people who consider, explore and develop ideas and solutions. FILUNI is an opportunity for UT to lead these conversations on an international scale and present the groundbreaking works of our leading faculty members and scholars on pressing issues such as artificial intelligence, seismic engineering, and water and the environment,” said Jay Hartzell, UT Austin president. “Mexico and its universities have been and will be among our most valued partners, and we look forward to enhancing connections, further developing mutually beneficial research initiatives, and establishing stronger ties with UT alumni and friends in the region. It is an honor to be the first U.S. university guest of honor at this prestigious Latin American event.”
Conference programming was designed around research pillars of UT’s 10-year strategic plan, Change Starts Here, and will address many of the plan’s objectives: advancing interdisciplinary study and creative innovation; propelling faculty members on meaningful career journeys; preparing graduate and professional students for a diverse array of paths; enhancing career opportunities for staff members; and preparing future leaders to solve problems in a dynamic world.
In total, UT will present more than 50 roundtable discussions, research symposia, live podcasts, musical performances, film screenings and exhibits covering topics that include water and the environment in Mexico and the U.S., the AMPATH global community health initiative, the relationship between artificial intelligence and architecture, and demonstrations of an interface that transforms brain activity into physical action.
“We look forward to participating in FILUNI 2023 as guest of honor,” said Sonia Feigenbaum, UT’s senior vice provost for global engagement and chief international officer, leader of the University’s efforts at FILUNI. “We are the first U.S. institution partnering with the hosting university to deliver a dynamic and interactive program. As such, we will advance the robust collaboration between researchers, artists, educators, practitioners, students and alumni across myriad disciplines. This transnational event will act as a catalyst for enriched cultural exchange between our two nations.”
More than 130 UT Austin faculty members, graduate students, performers, staffers, campus leaders and alumni representing 20 of the University’s colleges, schools and units will travel to Mexico City as the largest international delegation in the University’s history. The University of Texas Press, a FILUNI participant since the book fair’s inaugural year, will showcase 600 of its titles, with more than 1,100 books available for purchase at the fair’s on-site bookstore.
“We were thrilled to learn that The University of Texas would be the featured guest this year, an honor that has allowed UT Press to further expand its presence with a vastly increased number of titles on display and a host of our UT Austin faculty authors attending to present work from their books,” said Robert Devens, director of UT Press. “Perhaps most important of all, participating in FILUNI alongside a large UT Austin contingent has connected us to colleagues across the Forty Acres and helped the world to see the central role of UT Press in the intellectual and cultural life of a great University.”
Mexico City is home to UT Austin’s first Global Gateway, which also serves to represent and increase the University’s visibility by supporting increased student, faculty and alumni engagement in the region.