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Northwestern Buffett Institute for Global Affairs

At Northwestern Buffett, we're asking hard questions...

  1. Can social media rebuild journalistic freedom?
  2. Can marginalized communities reverse the environmental challenges that impact them

... and we're finding new partners to help answer them.

  1. Can universities across the world partner to solve today's toughest problems?
  2. Can students build a grassroots movement to improve health around the world?

The new genius is a collaborative genius. Discover the ways Buffett is bringing teams together to solve complex problems.

Start discovering

We believe that relationships – among individuals and institutions, globally and locally – can fuel knowledge and develop solutions to global challenges.

Enabling Collaboration

Northwestern Buffett provides the institutional support needed to bring together and catalyze new ideas.

A New Model for Research

Buffett's multi-stage research trajectory starts with dialogue. Faculty from across the University explore real-world problems from interdisciplinary perspectives. To continue work on the topic, discussion groups can participate in our Idea Incubation Workshop, a three-day event to plan for ongoing collaboration as funded Buffett Working Groups. Watch the video to see our process in action.

Explore our APPROACH

Building a Global Alliance

Together with faculty, university leadership, and partner institutions, Northwestern Buffett is creating a global alliance. More than a simple partnership, the “alliance” of universities focuses on stimulating and sharing in research, teaching, and global engagement to collaboratively respond to social challenges. It will create a network that will benefit faculty, students, scholars, and participating institutions, as well as local communities.

Learn about Northwestern's Global Alliance

Reporting Islam conference
The idea workshop is intended to move us beyond the 'what' questions and instead ask us how we can generate research that is meaningful, relevant, actionable and rigorous.”
Kimberley Marion Suyseesa
Kimberley Marion Suyseesa

Assistant Professor of Political Science and member of Northwestern Buffett’s Disproportionate Impacts of Environmental Challenges Working Group.

One of the strengths of having an interdisciplinary team and the support of the Buffett Institute is that we have relationships around the world. ”
Patty Leow
Patty Leow

Director of the Center for Native American and Indigenous Research and member of Northwestern Buffett’s Disproportionate Impacts of Environmental Challenges Working Group.

Driving Northwestern's Global Efforts

Russia Returns panel discussion

Northwestern Buffett is an integrated organization with offices that facilitate global learning and research and serve international students, scholars, and faculty. It also plays a key role in developing and implementing Northwestern's global strategic plan, which will be available in Spring 2020. 

Read more about the ways Northwestern Buffett is globalizing the university.

Join Us

Participate in our critical work.

Explore opportunities to collaborate with Buffett as a researcher, a student, a potential partner, or a member of the public.


Northwestern Professor Spotlights Forces Behind Structural Racism in Liberal Democracies

Why do racial injustices, racial inequalities and racial disparities in democracies persist over time without redress? Why has police violence against Black citizens persisted in the post-civil rights era? Northwestern University Associate Professor of African American Studies Dr. Barnor Hesse discussed these questions and more this week in a Northwestern Roberta Buffett Institute for Global Affairs webinar on “White Sovereignty and The Law of Racial Rule.” Hesse highlighted some of the reasons why liberal democracies are the sites and sources of continuous racial injustices, inequalities, and disparities, despite claims to liberty and equality as universal ideas and practices.


[UN SDGs Webinar 2] Ecologies of Crisis and the Proliferation of ...

October 20, 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM

The year 2020 has brought about global insecurity in unprecedented and inexplicable ways. This panel will take the Arab ...

Oilseeds and Slippery Slopes: Political Ecologies of Violence in ...

October 28, 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM

EDGS Graduate Lecture Series Jayson Maurice Porter, PhD candidate in History, Northwestern University  Overview: Based o...

[UN SDGs Webinar 3] Building Sustainable Futures: Global Challeng...

November 3, 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM

Topic: Elections, the Rule of Law, and the State of Democracy Speakers:  Paul Gowder joined the Northwestern Law faculty...