Dozens of university presidents from around the world will gather at Northwestern to explore solutions to critical global issues when the University hosts the second annual U7+ Summit June 2-3.
President Morton Schapiro announced the news today. The Summit will be held in Evanston and hosted by Northwestern, with activities occurring at the Evanston and Chicago campuses. It will be co-sponsored by Northwestern, Georgetown University, Columbia University and the University of California, Berkeley.
The second annual U7+ Summit is a precursor to the 2020 G7 Summit at Camp David June 10-12. This will be the first time the U7+ Summit is held in the U.S.
“We are honored to host this important gathering of universities committed to global leadership,” President Schapiro said. “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,” he observed.
More than 50 universities have been invited to the U7+ Summit, which is the annual meeting of the U7 Alliance, a global alliance of university presidents designed to coordinate and advance the role of universities as global actors committed to multilateral action in addressing global problems.
University presidents, global leaders and senior international officers are expected to attend the U7+ Summit in Evanston. The inaugural summit, held in July 2019 in France, included participants from 47 universities in G7 countries and 13 other countries, including Argentina, Australia, Ghana, India, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Mexico, Morocco, Nigeria, Senegal, Singapore, South Africa and South Korea. The 47 universities represent more than 2 million students around the world.
“This is an important moment for us as we prepare to unveil an ambitious global strategic plan for Northwestern,” said President Schapiro in a message to the University community. “Our 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.”
The Roberta Buffett Institute for Global Affairs (Northwestern Buffett) will help lead the cross-university team hosting the summit.
Building on work initiated at the inaugural U7+ Summit last year at The Paris Institute of Political Studies (Sciences Po), Northwestern, Georgetown, Columbia, UC Berkeley and other U7 Alliance partners will develop a multilateral agenda that focuses on reimagining what it means to be a global actor and to work collaboratively across institutional, national and disciplinary borders.
“Just as the U7 Alliance has an established agenda that emphasizes 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 Northwestern’s Buffett Institute for Global Affairs.
“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,” Riles noted.
The U7+ Summit is a unique opportunity for university leaders from a wide variety of nations to discuss a common agenda and establish a framework for university actions in today’s global landscape. Rather than being designed as a scientific colloquium, the U7+ Summit creates a space for debate and reflection on the concrete actions that universities can take as engaged global actors. It also provides university leaders an opportunity to weigh in on issues and tackle global challenges to be addressed at the upcoming G7 Summit.
Over two days, more than 100 presidents and top leaders of universities will continue the work begun in 2019 to establish commitments on five key topics, including:
- Universities as key actors in a global world.
- Climate and energy transition.
- Inequality and polarized societies.
- Technological transformation.
- Community engagement and impact.
As in 2019, the 2020 Summit will conclude with a series of concrete commitments made by each university president for their respective instititutions. These commitments will be discussed during the meeting in Evanston and voted on by the university presidents, that will be presented for consideration as part of the broader G7 discussions that will take place at Camp David.
International Universities invited to the 2020 U7+ Summit include the following:
Universidad de Buenos Aires – Argentina
Australian National University – Australia
McGill University – Canada
University of Ottawa – Canada
University of Montreal – Canada
University of British Columbia – Canada
University of Toronto – Canada
Houphouët-Boigny – Ivory Coast
Aix-Marseille Université – France
Ecole polytechnique – France
HEC Paris – France
MEAE – FranceMESRI – France
Palais de l’Elysée – France
Paris Sciences et Lettres (PSL) – France
Sciences Po – France
Sorbonne Université – France
Université Côte d’Azur – France
Université de Bordeaux – France
Université de Lyon -- France
Université de Paris – France
Université de Strasbourg – France
Université de Grenobles Alpes – France
Université Paris Saclay-- France
Free University Berlin – Germany
Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München - Germany
Technical University of Munich (TUM) – Germany
University of Heidelberg – Germany
University of Mannheim -- Germany
Ashesi University – Ghana
Indian Institute of Technology Bombay – India
Sapienza University of Rome – Italy
Universita Bocconi – Italy
Università degli Studi di Milano – Italy
University of Naples Federico II – Italy
Hitotsubashi University – Japan
Keio University – Japan
Kyoto University - Japan
Osaka University – Japan
University of Tokyo – Japan
University of Nairobi – Kenya
Kenyatta University - Kenya
Seoul National University – South Korea
Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico - Mexico
Université Monhammed VI Polytechnique – Morocco
University of Ibadan – Nigeria
Université Cheikh Anta Diop – Senegal
National University of Singapore – Singapore
University of Cape Town – South Africa
Imperial College London – United Kingdom
London School of Economics and Political Science – United Kingdom
University College of London – United Kingdom
University of Cambridge – United Kingdom
University of Edinburgh – United Kingdom
Columbia University – United States
Georgetown University – United States
University of California-Berkeley – United States
The selection of Northwestern to host the U7+ Summit builds on the relationship the University has had with Sciences Po for nearly two decades, a partnership that is a model of the University's globalization strategy: multidimensional partnerships with foreign institutions that it can expand and deepen over time. This partnership, established by the Office of International Relations, now encompasses undergraduate study abroad, graduate students, faculty exchanges, and collaborations with Pritzker and Medill.
Northwestern Buffett develops, aligns and champions Northwestern University’s global strategy and engagement. Northwestern Buffett operates under the Office of the Provost to advance a new model for research, teaching and engagement to increase international opportunities for collaboration in order to address critical global challenges.
Summit participants will seek to have an impact on the multilateral agenda of the G7. Annually, the U7+ Summit cultivates a collective reflection on how the U7 Alliance of world universities will showcase their joint willingness to work together at the global level as engaged universities.