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Credit: Ananya Chandra

Some of the sharpest minds in politics will convene at Penn later this month to discuss issues that pose threats to global order.

On Sept. 25, Joe Biden will join former National Security Advisors Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster and Susan Rice, and former U.K. Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg at a Perry World House event titled, "Competing Visions for the Global Order."

The colloquium will begin on Sept. 24 with a closed-door conference and will be followed on Sept. 25 by a public event featuring panel discussions and speeches. The two-day event will feature several other notable speakers as well.

“During the colloquium, Penn will be at the center of the most significant conversations about the competing visions for the future of the global order," PWH Director William Burke-White, said. "The Penn community will be able to engage with the people who have been shaping the future of the international system."

The participants will grapple with issues of a changing world order, of the evolving role of U.S. global leadership, and of whether there is space for cooperation between states in the current geopolitical environment.

Biden will conduct a "Leader's Dialogue" with Clegg, Global Order Program Manager John Gans said. Rice and McMaster will also both speak on stage at the colloquium. 

A panel will be held the morning of Sept. 25 and will feature former Mexican President Felipe Calderon, former U.S. Ambassador to India Richard Verma, and former British diplomat Catherine Ashton. National Public Radio journalist Deborah Amos will facilitate the panel.

Many of the speakers, including Rice, McMaster, and Calderon, are among the 13 fellows PWH announced for the 2018-19 academic year last week. 

Courtesy of Penn Associate Director for News Amanda Mott

“Some of the biggest names in foreign policy are coming to speak and spend the day at Penn, which is great,” Gans said. “It is a big moment, it shows the University of Pennsylvania is the place to be to have a conversation about the global order.”

Past PWH events on political issues have included topics about North Korea, the refugee crisis, and the state of American democracy.

“It’s a great thing for students, whether they are freshmen or graduate students, to be able to engage with,” Gans said. “It’s a sign that Perry World House is becoming the home for this conversation both on Penn’s campus, but also nationally and even internationally.”

"There are so many different events that Perry World House hosts, I find that a lot of people have gone to Perry World House for one reason or another, regardless of what kind of major they are in," College senior and incoming Perry World House student fellow Lauren Kahn said.

Gans and Burke-White are currently traveling to Beijing to kick off the month-long conversation on global order at the Penn Wharton China Center. At the workshop this Friday, American academics and policy makers will meet with Chinese academics in order to discuss China's goals and how the U.S. will react, Gans said. 

"It's all tied together: A month-long conversation that will then be built upon in the year ahead," Gan said. "We have a research team on the future of the global order, and this is the conversation."

Tickets go live for the Sept. 25 public event on Sept. 5, at 10 a.m.

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