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Northwestern to host 2020 Global U7+ Summit

Over 100 university presidents and leaders from across the G7 countries will come together in the US for the second annual U7+ Summit this June, to explore solutions to the “world’s most pressing issues.” 

Northwestern University will host the second annual U7+ Summit Photo: Wikimedia Commons

The U7+ Summit is the annual meeting of the U7 Alliance, the first global alliance of university presidents for the purpose of coordinating and advancing the role of universities as global actors committed to multilateral action to address global problems.

“We are honoured to host this important gathering of universities committed to global leadership”

Presidents and leaders will explore five key issues including climate and energy transition, inequality and polarised societies, technological transformation, community engagement and impact, and universities as key actors in a global world. 

The summit will be hosted by Northwestern University and co-sponsored by Northwestern, Georgetown University, Columbia University and the University of California, Berkeley.

“We are honoured to host this important gathering of universities committed to global leadership,” said Northwestern president Morton Schapiro. 

“It is imperative that today’s universities come together to play a leading role in addressing global challenges that can be solved through collaboration across disciplines and geographical boundaries. 

“Our role as host of the 2020 U7+ Summit is a natural extension of our global research and education mission and our commitment to focus the world’s brightest minds on the world’s most pressing problems.”

Schapiro said that it was an important moment for Northwestern as they are preparing to unveil an ambitious global strategic plan. 

He said that the university’s goals, which include the development of deeper strategic partnerships and an expanded commitment toward the global social good, are in line with the mission of the U7 Alliance.

“Just as the U7 Alliance has an established agenda that emphasises collaboration and engagement beyond G7 countries, Northwestern’s global strategy is deeply committed to true reciprocity in global problem-solving,” said Annelise Riles, executive director of the Northwestern Buffett Institute for Global Affairs, which will help lead the cross-university team hosting the summit. 

“That means building collaborative alliances around mutual benefit and across varying economic circumstances, which is a distinctive perspective Northwestern brings to formation of the 2020 U7+ Summit agenda.”

Last year the inaugural U7+ Summit was held at The Paris Institute of Political Studies (Sciences Po). As in 2019, the 2020 Summit will conclude with a series of concrete commitments made by each university president for their respective institutions.


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