Skip to main content

Global Leaders Forum

CCD’s Global Leaders Forum brings world leaders to UC San Diego to share insights on current trends in global policy and politics, leadership and life lessons. The forum enriches the diplomacy dialogue at GPS and the wider San Diego community, and, most of all, is an essential learning experience for the next generation of world leaders being educated at the School of Global Policy and Strategy.

Upcoming Events

There are currently no upcoming Global Leaders Forum events. Please check back later.

Past Events

CCD Global Leaders Forum: Ambassador Roberto Azevêdo
What is the role of international institutions in (re)Globalization?
April 21, 2022

roberto-azevedo.jpgWe joined Ambassador Roberto Azevêdo, current Executive Vice President and Chief Corporate Affairs Officer, the Chairman Board of Directors at PepsiCo Foundation and former Director-General of the World Trade Organization (WTO), for an address on “What is the role of international institutions in (re)Globalization?” UC San Diego Chancellor Pradeep Khosla will provide welcome remarks and CCD Director Renee Bowen will moderate the discussion.

The international institutions that have sustained economic cooperation for the past 75 years seem to be losing their relevance. The Doha Round of multilateral trade negotiations have been stalled for decades and, as of December 2019, the World Trade Organization’s (WTO’s) dispute settlement mechanism is no longer functional. Ambassador Robert Azevêdo, former Director General of the WTO, takes stock of the challenges facing multilateralism and presents insights on the path ahead for international institutions.

In Ambassador Roberto Azevêdo’s current role as Chief Corporate Affairs Officer at PepsiCo, he oversees Public Policy, Government Affairs, Communications and The PepsiCo Foundation, while working closely with the Sustainability team. Prior to joining PepsiCo, Azevêdo worked as a career diplomat, most recently serving as Director-General of the WTO. During his tenure, the expanded its membership with the inclusion of half a dozen new members and worked to improve the service the WTO provided to members. He has held several posts in the Brazilian Foreign Ministry, including roles overseeing Economic and Technological Affairs and Dispute Settlement, where he was Brazil’s chief litigator in WTO disputes. Azevêdo graduated from the University of Brasilia with a degree in Electrical Engineering. Read his bio online.

CCD Global Leaders Forum: Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Director-General of the World Trade Organization (WTO)
The Role of the WTO in Ensuring Trade Works for All

Feb. 25, 2022 | Video | Article


Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala is the Director-General of the World Trade Organization (WTO). She is an economist and international development expert with over 30 years of experience. She was Chair of the Board of Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance (2016 – 2020), the African Risk Capacity (2014 – 2020) and Co-Chair of The Global Commission on the Economy and Climate. Previously, she served as Senior Advisor at Lazard and sat on the B​​oards of Standard Chartered PLC and Twitter Inc.

Okonjo-Iweala was appointed as an AU COVID-19 Special Envoy and WHO COVID-19 Special Envoy. She served twice as Nigeria’s Finance Minister (2003-2006, 2011-2015), the first woman to hold the position, and spent a 25-year career at the World Bank rising to the No. 2 position of Managing Director. In 2020, she was named Forbes African of the Year. She has been ranked by Fortune as one of the 50 Greatest World Leaders (2015) and by Forbes as one of the Top 100 Most Powerful Women in the World consecutively for four years. She holds a Bachelor’s in Economics from Harvard University and a Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Read the full biography here.

CCD Global Leaders Forum: Christopher Landau, Former United States Ambassador to Mexico
Oct. 21, 2021
Former United States Ambassador to Mexico Christopher Landau presented “COVID: A Stress Test for USMCA”. The United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) went into effect on July 1, 2020, during unprecedented global uncertainty. The pandemic, trade wars, natural disasters and rising geopolitical tensions tested the resilience of global economic agreements. Landau served as the U.S. Ambassador from 2019 to 2021, in the midst of this upheaval, and during the infancy of the USMCA agreement. Landau shared his thoughts on the agreement’s inception and performance after its first year in existence, and possible future direction.

CCD Global Leaders Forum: Robert B. Zoellick, Former President of the World Bank
Oct. 22, 2021
Robert B. Zoellick, the 11th President of the World Bank spoke on "The Idea of North America". The discussion was moderated by Caroline Freund, the first economist to serve as dean of the UC San Diego School of Global Policy and Strategy, and former World Bank Global Director of Trade, Investment and Competitiveness. Zoellick shared insights from the top of the world's largest development bank, and from his extensive experience in policymaking as a former U.S. Deputy Secretary of State and U.S Trade Representative. 

CCD Global Leaders Forum: Andrew Michael Holness, ON, MP, Prime Minister of Jamaica
Feb. 22, 2021 | Video

The Most Honourable Andrew Michael Holness ON, MP, Prime Minister of Jamaica, presented on "Mobilizing Climate Financing for a Sustainable Future." CCD Director Renee Bowen moderated the discussion. Climate change is a global issue that requires a collective, global response. However, not all nations share the same resources to implement effective measures to mitigate climate change. Those countries which are most affected by the impacts of climate change are faced with an undue burden to respond. A more collective effort is needed to share the commitment to the problem, specifically in financing. The Prime Minister shared his thoughts on this topic, along with the work he is doing as the Co-Chair of the UN Climate Change Financing Initiative with French President Emmanuel Macron.

CCD Global Leaders Forum: Jeff Immelt, Former CEO, GE
Feb. 23, 2021 | Video

Jeffrey Immelt, former CEO of General Electric, presented on "The Future of Manufacturing and Global Supply Chains." CCD Director Renee Bowen moderated the discussion. Trade wars have disrupted supply chains, domestic opposition to globalization is rising and global economic leadership has faltered. The future of global business is highly uncertain. As former CEO of one the largest global firms, Jeffrey Immelt provided fresh insights into what lies ahead for the manufacturing sector, and what the government can do to address the policy challenges.

CCD Global Leaders Forum: Dr. Condoleezza RiceCondoleezza Rice
Sept. 13, 2019 | View Photos

The forum’s inaugural event featured former Secretary of State, Dr. Condoleezza Rice who discussed her new book, "To Build a Better World," co-authored with Philip Zelikow, and shared insights about life as the nation's top diplomat.