Penn Global 10 Symposium highlights range and reach of Penn Global research

May 2, 2022
By Kristen de Groot | Penn Today

From using computer vision to improve sustainability of Chinese pig farmers to addressing the benefits of clean cookstoves in East Africa, the range and reach of 21 new faculty-led projects being supported by the Penn Global Research and Engagement Grant Program was on display at a symposium.

The 2022 Launch Symposium at Perry World House brought together faculty from eight of Penn’s 12 schools to share five-minute presentations on their projects that span research, capacity-building, and development efforts across Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean, India, China, and beyond. The symposium shined a light on Penn’s commitment to integrate knowledge across disciplines toward addressing global challenges and to global engagement in a post-pandemic world.

In remarks at the symposium’s start, Vice Provost for Global Initiatives Ezekiel Emanuel told the in-person and virtual audience that, when he arrived at Penn a little more than a decade ago, he inherited “a fledgling thing called the Global Engagement Fund.”

“It was tiny, it was unfocused, and there was no strategic plan behind it,” he said. “And I can safely say 10 years has made a huge difference.” Now, the grant program consists of the Global Engagement FundChina and India Research and Engagement Funds, and the new Holman Africa Research and Engagement Fund.

He also noted how when Penn Global got started globalization was “all the rage,” but now the world has been retreating from globalization, even before the pandemic put physical barriers between nations. Despite all this, Penn is not retreating from engaging with the world, he said.

“This is a moment where understanding other countries, understanding what’s happening in other places, creating bonds among academics, here and in other countries are essential,” Emanuel said.

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Logo for Penn Global's 10th AnniversaryTo commemorate Penn Global’s 10th anniversary, we are featuring stories from the last decade to celebrate Penn’s transformation as a global institution, highlighting key moments of this transformation and the impact of Penn Global and its partners on the Penn community and beyond.