Fifth Annual 2021 International Conference on Border Studies: Everyday Borders [Virtual Conference] : October 27th - October 29th

  • US-Mexico
  • BR-Main
  • UTRGV-Edbg



The theme of this year’s 5th  Annual International Conference on Border Studies, hosted by the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley and the Autonomous University of Tamaulipas, is “Everyday Borders.” The theme encourages a focus on the ways in which individuals, communities, and institutions significantly challenge and resist borders and policies related to borders and migration even as the current world is seeing increasing opposition to migration and immigration. The idea of resilience aims to emphasize the subtle and everyday ways in which people living on borders and crossing borders effectively respond to the impact that borders have on their lives. It highlights that while frontier inhabitants and migrants face conditions of vulnerability, social marginalization, insecurity, discrimination, and exploitation, they not only resist and overcome these obstacles but even come out stronger and more resilient.  

We are excited to see such growing interest in the conference in its fifth year. This year, the conference hosts speakers from 13 countries (US, Mexico, the United Kingdom, Demark, The Netherlands, France, Austria, Turkey, India, Indonesia, South Africa, Cameroon and Kuwait) and from over 30 academic institutions. We are especially pleased to have Ather Zia as, keynote speaker, Kathryn Cassidy as plenary speaker and Juan Manuel Mendoza Guerrero as guest speaker.   

The proximity to the border of our locations in Mexico and the US is a special opportunity for scholars and researchers from around the globe to collaborate in a unique geographic region and present multidisciplinary research on the important and timely issues related to borders. The conference aims to encourage working together across borders and developing lasting collaborative relationships to find solutions to some of the most important international economic, social, and ecological problems we face today.  

For any questions, contact Caroline Miles at or call (956) 457-3083

Students attending this conference also have the opportunity to:  Request Support


The Fifth Annual International Border Studies Conference Program will be announced soon.



Conference Fees

Pre-registration before October 1st:

Faculty  - $125
Faculty from Institutions in Mexico - $60
Graduate Students - $50
Undergraduate Students - $25

After October 1st:

Faculty - $150
Graduate Student - $50
Undergraduate students - $30

Portal for Pre-Registration

The portal to pay pre-registration fees online can be accessed by clicking here

For help navigating through the pay portal please review the First-Time User Guide.

Panel Sessions & Roundtable Discussions

To be announced

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Conference Schedule
October 27, 2021 - Residencial Inn & Suites (Matamoros, Tamaulipas, Mexico)

9:00 am TBA
9:30-10:20 am


10:40-11:00 am


11:00-11:20 am TBA
11:20-11:40 am


11:40-12:00 pm


12:00-12:20 pm


12:20-12:40 pm


October 28 - 29, 2021 - The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (Edinburg, Texas)

7:30 am TBA
8:10-8:20 am TBA
8:30-10:00 am TBA
10:00-10:10 am TBA
10:10-11:15 am


11:15-11:25 am TBA
11:25-12:55 pm TBA
1:00-2:00 pm



2:00-3:00 pm TBA
3:00-3:10 pm TBA
3:10-4:40 pm TBA
4:40-4:45 pm TBA
4:45-6:15 pm TBA
6:15-7:30 pm




  • Conference Keynote Speaker: Ather Zia, Ph.D.

  • Ather Zia has a doctorate degree from the Department of Anthropology at the University of California at Irvine. She also has two Masters Degrees; one in Communications from California State University Fullerton and another in Journalism from Kashmir University. Her recent publication is titled: Resisting Disappearance Military Occupation & Women's Activism in Kashmir 2019.

    Ather has been a journalist with BBC World service. She has also done a brief stint as a civil servant with the Kashmir government which in a lighter vein she refers to as her *pre-pre-preliminary fieldwork*. She is a published author and columnist. Her essays and creative work including fiction and poetry have appeared in a variety of magazines. She has also published her first collection of poems titled “The Frame.” In 2013 she won the second prize for ethnographic poetry on Kashmir from the Society for Humanistic Anthropology (American Anthropological Association).

     She is the founder-editor of Kashmir Lit, a digital journal based on writings on Kashmir. She has been elected to the board of Society of Humanistic Anthropology (SHA) of the Anthropological Association of America (2015-2016) and is also the book review editor "elect" (2017), for the Anthropology News (Association for Feminist Anthropology Section). In 2011 she co-founded Critical Kashmir Studies, an interdisciplinary network of scholars working on the Kashmir region. In addition to scholarly endeavors the group strongly focuses on applied and engaged anthropology projects.

    Currently she is an Assistant Professor in the Anthropology Department and Gender Studies Program at University of Northern Colorado Greeley.


  • Plenary Speaker: Kathryn Cassidy, Ph.D. 

  • Dr. Kathryn Cassidy is Associate Professor of Human Geography at Northumbria University. She is a feminist political geographer and activist, whose work explores processes and practices of bordering and ordering contemporary societies and the ways in which these are being resisted both through collective and mundane actions. Her research elucidates the ways in which borders and the processes and practices through which they are (re)made have moved from the margins into the centre of contemporary social and political life.

    This research primarily emanates from a collaboration with colleagues from the EUBorderscapes (2012-2016) project, Professor Nira Yuval-Davis and Dr. Georgie Wemyss. She completed her undergraduate studies in geography at the University of Nottingham, before moving on to study for an interdisciplinary MA at the School of Slavonic and East European Studies, UCL in 1999-2000. After a few years of working in the private sector, she returned to academia in 2005 to complete an MA and PhD at the University of Birmingham, which were funded by the UK’s Economic and Social Research Council and incorporated language training and fieldwork in Ukraine and Romania.

    She taught at the University of Birmingham in the 2006-2007 academic year and whilst carrying out research in Ukraine, she also gave a series of lectures at Yuriy Fedkovych Chernivtsi National University. She was a research fellow at the University of Babes-Bolyai in Romania from January to July 2009. Prior to joining Northumbria in September 2013, Kathryn worked in the School of Geography at Queen Mary, University of London, initially as a Teaching Fellow and then as a Lecturer in Human Geography.

    More recently, she has been focused on understanding the ways in which new solidarities are emerging to challenge and resist the extension of bordering practices into everyday life, i.e. new processes of dis/b/ordering and both state-sponsored and informal punitiveness towards marginalised populations and those who seek to support them.


  • Guest Speaker: Juan Manuel Mendoza Guerrero, Ph.D.

  • Dr. Juan Manuel Mendoza Guerrero received his doctorate degree in Borderlands History from the University of Texas at El Paso. He attended the Autonomous University of Sinaloa for his Masters in United States and Canada Studies, and received a second Masters degree in Economics from the Autonomous Technological Institute of Mexico.

    He has taught a variety of courses at the Technological Institute of Ciudad Juarez, Autonomous University of Sinaloa, University of Texas at El Paso, Monterrey Institute of Higher Education, and Thunderbird University.

    Dr. Mendoza has conducted extensive research on a range of topics. Some of his published research includes: The consumption of Nostalgia: Latin American Immigrants and the Creation of the Hispanic Market in the United States, Mexican Immigrants Food ways in Texas, 1880-1960s: Identity, Nationalism and Community, and, Buying in Supermarkets: Race, Ethnicity, Gender and age in the Construction of the American Market in Mazatlan.

     Among Dr.Mendoza accomplishments are the 2003 National Prize for Foreign Trade Research from Mexico City and the Leader of the Academic Body in Consolidation “Migratory Movements and Regional Development.” He is a member of the State System of Scientist and Technological of Sinaloa and the National System of Researchers, Level 1.