On October 15, 2015, Harvard President Drew Gilpin Faust announced the creation of the Harvard Global Institute, founded to support scholarship and programs that will deepen Harvard’s international engagement and promote University-wide research to address major global challenges. The Institute will fund projects that bring Harvard faculty and students together with scholars from outside the United States to investigate problems of global impact, produce findings, and advance them in ways that achieve significant outcomes.

Currently, the HGI is funding proposals for interdisciplinary research on issues that are of particular salience to China and of relevance to other parts of the world; that is, topics should be “China-inclusive” without being “China-exclusive.” It is expected that project activities will not be limited to the Harvard campus, but will encompass significant work in China as well.

The HGI brings a deep understanding of global issues more fully into Harvard's intellectual work and life, and brings Harvard's strength to bear globally with maximum impact.  Today, the most critical challenges we face - such as climate change and inequality - pose problems that cross both national and disciplinary boundaries. These issues play out in regionally specific ways and addressing them will require University-wide collaborations along the lines of President Faust’s vision of “One Harvard”.

The HGI is comprised of a central funding and programming hub in Cambridge, Massachusetts.  Operational support for research projects and programming will come from the enhanced capacity of existing regional offices.  The initial phase of the HGI will focus on China, with the Harvard Center Shanghai providing local assistance.