Nearly 100 leaders from 48 universities across 17 countries attended the 2020 U7+ Presidential Summit
The U7+ Alliance is an international alliance of university presidents who engage both in discussion and in concrete action by making commitments that universities may take to address the most pressing global challenges in a multilateral context. It is the very first alliance of university presidents aimed at structuring and advancing their role as global actors across the multilateral agenda.
In the context of this alliance, university presidents will take stock of their unique civic and social responsibility as global actors, and pledge to take concrete action within their institutions for a local, regional and global impact. The founding members of the U7+ Alliance have agreed to meet yearly for an annual summit to discuss a common agenda and establish a space for universities’ action in today’s global landscape.
2019 U7+ Presidential Summit
The first U7+ Alliance summit was held in France on July 9-10, 2019, under the high patronage of Emmanuel Macron, just prior to the final meeting of the sous-sherpas which took place on July 11-12 in Paris. For this 2019 inaugural summit, universities from G7 countries attended and special invitations were extended to institutions in 14 countries worldwide (Morocco, Senegal, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Nigeria, Ghana, South Africa, Australia, India, South Korea, Singapore, Mexico, Argentina). These 45+ universities represented over 2 million students in the world.
The summit concluded with a series of concrete commitments, as discussed during the summit and voted by the university presidents, that were presented to President Macron, in view of the broader G7 discussions that were undertaken in Biarritz.
2020 U7+ Presidential Summit
In 2020, Northwestern University became the first U.S. university to host the U7+ Alliance of Universities Presidential Summit, convening nearly 100 university leaders from 48 institutions across 17 countries to explore the role higher education can play in addressing the critical global challenges youth and future generations will inherit. The Summit concluded with university presidents worldwide committing to work with government leaders in G7 countries and beyond to create new opportunities for mutual understanding across generations.
In 2021, Northwestern continued to lead the U7+ Alliance’s work to foster intergenerational dialogue and encourage policymakers to account for the interests and rights of youth in their efforts to tackle global issues ranging from climate change to economic inequality to ethical applications of artificial intelligence.
2021 U7+ Meeting of the Presidents
In October 2021, U7+ Alliance universities across 12 countries gathered virtually for the 2021 U7+ Meeting of the Presidents, which culminated in the U7+ Statement on Climate Change and Sustainability. The statement sets forth a set of specific commitments to lowering greenhouse gas emissions and offering enhanced access to climate education for students, while also acknowledging the disproportionate impact that climate change is having on vulnerable communities as well as the need to better engage youth.
The Meeting was co-hosted by Imperial College London, The London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), University College London (UCL), the University of Cambridge and the University of Edinburgh, and was convened by the U7+ Alliance Secretariat Northwestern University and Executive Committee Chair Sciences Po. Learn more about the 2021 U7+ Meeting of the Presidents here.