Impact on a global scale.

The Master of Arts in International Development and Policy and the Obama Foundation Scholars Program are a natural extension of Harris Public Policy’s mission, focused on positive social impact at every scale. Harris Public Policy is a diverse community. Our students hail from 36 countries and speak 26 languages. Half come from outside the U.S. We have nearly 3,000 alumni worldwide.

What unites our community is a desire to effect change on a global scale. For more than 25 years, we have been redefining what it means to be a public policy school, shifting the conception of public policy from an ideology, reliant on politics and pedigree, to a science, rooted in data and impact.

At Harris, we develop leaders who fearlessly ask the hard questions and follow the evidence to find the answers: leaders who are adept at using the best science of our day to figure out what’s best for society and our world – and can get it done.

Making a Difference Around the World

Our faculty, students, and alumni seek data-driven solutions to international policy issues across multiple sectors and around the world, including today's most pressing issues in economic development, education, energy, security, health, the environment, and global conflict.

Harris Faculty

Harris faculty are addressing the hard questions, bringing sophisticated analysis and hard evidence to bear in confronting the world’s most complex challenges:

Harris Research Centers and Partnerships

Bridging research and education with policy impact, our 15 research centers and numerous affiliated centers serve as catalysts for research and engagement with the policy community locally and around the world. Harris students take advantage of deep expertise and experience in areas such as international development, global conflict studies, and environmental impact through:

In addition, Harris partners with a number of international institutions in Europe, Asia, and South America to create opportunities for our students and faculty.

Harris Students

Our students are creating their own connections. Through student-led organizations and events such as Latin America(n) Matters, Asian Policy Forum, and the Inter-Policy School Summit, our students have partnered with organizations like the World Bank, foreign governmental agencies, and international think-tanks to host events and draw attention on the most pressing international development topics of the day.

Harris students actively participate in policy competitions that enable them to advance new ideas for global change, including five Harris teams that submitted plans in 2017 to solve global challenges in education, environment and climate change, peace and human rights, poverty alleviation, and public health.

International policy issues are a growing part of our curriculum. Working with their advisors, our students can create academic plans that enable them to pursue certificates in International Development or Global Conflict and gain first-hand experience in our Global Conflict Policy Lab. Right now, Harris students are evaluating the impact of foreign aid on the conflict in Afghanistan and assessing how fire has been used as a weapon of displacement and ethnic cleansing against the Rohingya in Myanmar.

Students also organize trips to Japan, Cuba, China, Israel, Mexico, and elsewhere that are designed to connect them to key organizations, elected officials, and government entities that are driving policy in this arena.

Harris Alumni

Harris alumni are tackling society's toughest international problems with innovative, data-driven solutions.

Harris alumni work in the public and private sectors and for non-profit organizations, NGOs, and IGOs. They are program officers, campaign chiefs of staff, chief marketing officers, consultants, government officers, and directors at major organizations worldwide.

A Global University

UChicago ideas and people cross more than academic disciplines—they transcend languages and nations.

At our campus in Hyde Park, students and scholars from around the world enhance each other's academic pursuits and share a passion for ideas with impact. Each year, UChicago enrolls more than 3,900 international students from over 100 countries. In addition, UChicago faculty and students engage with scholars from around the world through hundreds of programs, initiatives, and partnerships in over 38 nations and on every continent.

James Robinson

The Reverend Dr. Richard L. Pearson Professor of Global Conflict; Institute Director, The Pearson Institute for the Study and Resolution of Global Conflicts

James Robinson

A prominent political scientist and economist, James Robinson has conducted influential research in the field of political and economic development and the factors at the root causes of conflict. His work explores the relationship between poverty and society, and he co-authored "Why Nations Fail."