CDI. Comisión Nacional para el Desarrollo de los Pueblos Indígenas. México
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Miércoles, 22 de Septiembre de 2010 02:42
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The CDI was created May 21, 2003, as a decentralized agency of the Federal Public Administration, non-sectorial, with legal status, with its own assets, with operational, technical, budgetary and administrative autonomy, with headquarters in Mexico City, Federal District.

The CDI was established as an institution for obligatory consultation on indigenous affairs for the Federal Public Administration complex, as well as for evaluation of government programs and actions and training of federal, state and municipal public servants for improving care for the indigenous population.

Because it is an agency for consultation and carrying out of collaboration tasks with the agencies and entities of the federal public administration -- in coordination with the state and municipal governments, with involvement of indigenous peoples and communities and in concert with the social and private sectors -- the CDI uses the programs and its budget to build a convergent, structured action to contribute both to integral development and to enforcing the promotion and oversight of indigenous rights guaranteed in Article 2 of Political Constitution of the United Mexican States.

Based on the proposals of the indigenous representatives expressed in the consultation process, as well as on the institutional framework that recognizes the priorities that they indicate, the CDI defines development with identity for the indigenous peoples and communities, as the objective of the articulation of the efforts of the agencies and entities of all the institutions of the different levels of government and all the social stakeholders.

In the search for the harmonization of the national legal framework, in congruence with the collective indigenous rights conferred in the Political Constitution of the United Mexican States and the international instruments adapted by Mexico, the CDI works on the preparation of legal opinions for supporting legislative work on the federal and state levels. It also coordinates with public institutions in charge of the administration and enforcement of justice, to promote respect and defense of human rights of the indigenous population and support the capacity strengthening on the subject of indigenous rights.

It promotes, as one of its basic principals, the inclusion of a focus on gender in the programs and actions that it develops, in order to reverse the greater disadvantage and social gap in which indigenous women live today due to their condition of gender, class and ethnicity.

Through programs, projects and actions, the CDI promotes the valuation and respect of indigenous cultures and languages of the country as a fundamental element for building an intercultural dialog and thus contributing to eliminating discrimination aimed at the indigenous population. In the face of this challenge, actions are taken for the fortification of the material and immaterial assets of indigenous cultures and for dissemination of the cultural and linguistic diversity of the country in the mass media.

This agency has a consultation system established for indigenous peoples and communities to improve the design of public policies in the areas that directly concern it. It departs from a principal that participation is a very valuable element for preparation of development strategies for the different culturally relevant communities, municipalities and regions, given the knowledge that the indigenous population has about its own environment. Indigenous participation is a very important factor for preserving the cultural elements desired by the communities themselves and defining the changes to which they aspire.

Another important element of institutional management is channeling public resources and efforts so that the indigenous population overcomes gaps in basic infrastructure and communications for improving its living conditions. Through different programs, projects are supported for economic development, housing construction, provision of potable water, electricity, sewage services, among others, rural and feeder roads are built and modernized, in addition to improving access to new telecommunications technologies. Within the rules of the institutional programs, environmental sustainability criteria are considered and supports are channeled towards projects for the sustainable use of natural resources.

Coordinated actions are taken to strengthen the health system, which considers traditional medicine and even models of care with an intercultural focus. The improvement of the quality and coverage of basic bilingual education, preparatory education and higher education in indigenous regions is promoted.

In order to move toward new models of development management with a territorial focus, the integration of diagnostics on the local, municipal and regional scale is supported, which include ecological land zoning and consider cultural particularities, promoting the necessary accords between the three levels of government and the local population for supporting the preparation of long term development plans that are sustainable, integral and culturally pertinent.

Another topic within the institutional scope is migration, in its different forms, both of day workers and agricultural day workers in the labor fields, as well as the indigenous population that lives in cities, for which progress is made in the design of differentiated policies to attend the wide range of circumstances that confront this population, such as the need for housing and provision of services, the formation of labor capacities, protection against organized crime networks, or spaces for their cultural expression, among others.


We are a governing institution of the federal public policies for the development and preservation of indigenous peoples and communities, which guarantees respect for their cultures, enforcement of their rights and the achievement of a full life.


As an institution, we currently carry out…

Actions, projects and programs for the fortification of cultural practices and technical, organizational, economic-financial capacities; as well as for the recognition and enforcement of the rights of the indigenous population, both in the rural and urban setting, on the national, regional, state, local, family and individual levels.

We support and orient public agencies; we promote the adaptation of public policies on indigenous matters based on consultation and participation of representatives of the indigenous peoples and communities.

Why is this important?

Because a large percentage of the indigenous population lives in disadvantaged conditions in different aspects and territorial settings, which require immediate and coordinated attention.

Because there is a constitutional and moral obligation of the State and society towards the indigenous population, in the sense of improving their quality of life, with respect for their rights and cultural characteristics.

In the short and medium term, we have to…

Continue making efforts to overcome the social gaps in which the indigenous population lives (with resources, coverage in the rural and urban environments, operational efficiency and great creativity), seeking results.

To orient and coordinate the federal, state and municipal agencies, to care for the needs and requirements of the indigenous population in a simultaneous manner and with cultural pertinence.

So that, in the long term, we can

Steer public policies on the subject of indigenous peoples.

Accompany processes of development with identity, providing concurrence of public action towards indigenous territories with a long term perspective.

Manage fiscal resources and from other sources to channel them towards self-administering local and regional development processes.

That is, that the CDI

is recognized because, on the subject of indigenous peoples and communities:

  • it preserves their cultures,
  • it develops participatory strategic plans,
  • it defines public investment, and
  • it steers the actions of the federal public administration.



That the indigenous peoples and communities define their development projects in a framework of equity and agree on the formulation and application of public policies for their benefit, live in social and economic conditions similar to the national average and fully exercise their rights.

The expected effects of the institutional action, in the medium term, are:

  • The indigenous peoples and communities have equality of opportunities for their development; that is, that
  • The indigenous peoples and their members enjoy recognition of their collective rights.
  • The indigenous communities have public services and productive infrastructure.
  • The indigenous peoples and communities manage and consolidate initiatives for their development with identity.
  • The indigenous population is consulted and participates in development processes.
  • The public policies are pertinent in cultural terms.

The expected long term impacts of the institutional action are the following:

  • The gaps in the education, health and income indicators are imperceptible between indigenous and non-indigenous, and between indigenous men and women.
  • The indigenous population fully exercises its individual and collective rights.
  • The society as a whole values the indigenous diversity of Mexico and interacts with the indigenous population in terms of equality.

Institutional Structure

Section B of article 2 of the Constitution mandates the Federation, the State and Municipalities to establish the institutions and determine the policies necessary for guaranteeing the enforcement of the rights of indigenous peoples and their integral development, which shall be designed and operated jointly with them.

The indigenous policy prior to the 2001 reform considered an institution specialized on indigenous affairs that was in charge of all categories of attention, nevertheless the mandate of section B currently indicates that it will be the institutions that attend, with a multicultural focus, to the indigenous in the areas of their jurisdiction.

Assuming that focus requires that the institutions, in their three levels, assume, recognize and respect the cultural difference (Internal Regulatory Systems, language, culture) and take them into account in the institutional design and design of public policies on indigenous matters.

As a decentralized agency, and unlike its predecessor, the National Indigenous Institute (INI), the CDI should not mainly work on operating programs, but rather on arranging the presence of all the agencies of the three levels of government in the indigenous regions, so that each, in accordance with their attributes, attends the development requirements that the indigenous people define.

To bring about that circumstance, it prepares and updates diagnostics of different territorial scopes and development programs prepared in coordination with the Public Administration, and with the participation of representatives of the indigenous peoples it thus administers a budget that allows it to establish cooperation agreements and keep some programs operating.

The CDI has a Governing Board, as a government agency; a Director General, as an administrative body; and a Consultative Committee, as a body of consultation and liaison with the indigenous peoples and society.

The Governing Board is comprised of:

I. The President of the Board, who will be designated by the Officeholder of the Federal Executive from among its members;

II. The officeholder of each of the following Secretaries of State:

a ) Interior;
b ) Treasury and Public Credit;
c ) Economy;
d ) Social Development;
e ) Environment and Natural Resources;
f ) Agriculture, Livestock, Rural Development, Fisheries and Nutrition;
g ) Communications and Transport;
h ) Comptroller and Administrative Development;
i ) Public Education;
j ) Health;
k ) Labor and Social Welfare;
l ) Agrarian Reform
m) Tourism, and

III. The Director General of the Commission
The Commission has a Consultative Council, comprised of:

  • Representatives of the indigenous peoples, in accordance with the applicable legal provisions derived from article 2 of the Political Constitution of the United Mexican States;
  • Representatives of national academic and research institutions, specialists in indigenous affairs;
  • Representatives of social organizations that work with the indigenous communities;
  • The members of the directive tables of the Indigenous Affairs Commission of both Chamber of the Congress, and
  • One representative for each of the governments of the states in which the indigenous peoples and communities are located.

The Commission has administrative units and in its central region for fulfillment of its objective and functions.


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