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CLALS | What We Do

Baskets of fruit being sold at an open air market in Nicaragua

Our mission reflects American University’s commitment to promoting knowledge in the public interest and to fostering an active, informed citizenry prepared to grapple with the challenges of the 21st century. (Photo by Bill Gentile)

The Center for Latin American and Latino Studies (CLALS) at American University in Washington, DC engages scholars and practitioners to promote cutting-edge research to enrich understanding of Latin America and of Latino communities in the U.S.


Creating and disseminating knowledge is at the core of the Center’s scholarly and institutional agenda. Our current and archived research projects are accessible via the left-hand navigation bar.

Awards & Training

CLALS is committed to advancing high-level research by AU graduate students and scholars on Latin America and Latinos by supporting various programs within AU's six Schools and Colleges and through the administration of Graduate Field Research Grants and the William M. LeoGrande Prize and Award.

Degree & Certificate Programs

Graduate Student Field Research Grants

William M. LeoGrande Award and Prize


In designing and implementing projects, CLALS establishes dynamic partnerships with academic institutions, think tanks, non-governmental and community organizations, and governmental agencies throughout the United States and Latin America. Center projects are supported through funding from extramural donors and agencies as well as by University resources.