Gain invaluable research experience during the journey of a lifetime.
With generous financial support for undergraduates, the Columbia University Global Scholars Program Summer Research Workshop gives Columbia faculty and students the opportunity to travel the globe and conduct comparative research in real-world settings.
Beginning in the summer of 2012, groups of undergraduate students, competitively chosen from across all Columbia schools and disciplines, have been led by Columbia faculty on multi-week, multi-country research workshops on themes of global importance. For example, in the 2014 Global Scholars Program “Contemporary Cities of Eurasia: Berlin, Moscow, Ulan Bator, Beijing,” students and faculty travelled via the Trans-Siberian Railroad to compare the histories, cultures, and built environments of the major cities of Eastern Bloc countries. A previous program compared urbanization and environment in Beijing and Santiago.
Unlike traditional study abroad programs, the Global Scholars Program (GSP) allows students to conduct fieldwork in one area of the world and then test their findings in additional host countries that offer new sets of variables. GSP builds on the expertise, resources, and cross-regional networks offered by Columbia’s eight Global Centers. Its aim is to help undergraduates map the globe by exploring transnational issues and applying social science research skills in a range of challenging and diverse international contexts. The program also provides students with the opportunity to deepen their field research by interacting with key local actors: important figures from government, business, the media, and civil society, as well as ordinary citizens. In addition, Columbia groups work with local university students and professors to build an understanding of how theoretical and practical approaches to particular global problems differ from one regional community to another.
Before the summer workshop, students enroll in a spring course that examines the transnational themes explored in their program. The workshop itself culminates in a presentation and a major research paper. Some projects may be collaborative, with each student focusing on a particular aspect of a larger topic. Other projects may be individual, in some cases leading to a senior thesis.
Global Scholars Programs:
Summer 2012: Environment and Urbanization—Beijing, Shanghai, and Mumbai
Summer 2013: Pathways to Development—Beijing and Santiago
Summer 2014: Contemporary Cities of Eurasia—Berlin, Moscow, Ulan Bator, and Beijing
Summer 2017: Media Practices in India and China: A Summer Program in Mumbai and Beijing–Click here to learn more.
Summer 2017: Latin American Cities: Havana, Panama City, Rio de Janeiro, Buenos Aires
“To be a global scholar is to gain a real global perspective on how societies are dealing with their most pervasive problems. This is done by walking the built environment, talking to active citizens, meeting with governmental officials, and listening to scholars in the very places these problems are happening. The Global Scholars Program is this and much more…” -Pablo Mota, Alumnus, 2012 GSP