Between Policies and Life: The Politics of Buen Vivir in Contemporary Ecuador

Daniela Bressa Florentin

Abstract

The emergence of Buen Vivir as a political project can be thought of as the result of the confluence of two processes: (i) the cumulative struggles of highly organised indigenous movements against the implementation of neoliberal policies and (ii) the emergence of a popular centre-left government implementing public policies through state institutions. The emergence and rise of Buen Vivir has been the result of political action. It is possible to identify definitions stressing and highlighting different aspects according to the interests, goals, and visions of the actors supporting them. The objective of this paper is to identify what elements are put at the centre of these definitions in order to draw political boundaries between forces.