Democracy demands discourse.

The World Affairs Council of Philadelphia is a private, nonprofit, nonpartisan educational organization dedicated to informing and engaging people of all ages on matters of national and international significance. The Council provides its members and the greater Philadelphia community with access to influential figures in the global arena as well as opportunities to visit fascinating destinations through its unique travel program. With the support of individual and corporate members, the Council's global education program enhances the education of area students who are the citizens, workforce, and leaders of the future. Carrying its mission beyond Philadelphia, the Council produces the national public television series, The Whole Truth with David Eisenhower.

Upcoming events

Become a Member

Whether you're a student, a business professional, or an individual with a keen interest in the news and the world around you, you'll discover the World Affairs Council of Philadelphia to be one of the best ways to fulfill those interests.

Meet world leaders and experts.

The Council is one of the top public policy forums in the nation and offers a diverse series of more than 30 substantive speaker events on a variety of topics each year.

Support the Next Generation.

The Council's nationally acclaimed world affairs youth education and development program has become a staple of the curriculum of major school districts in southern Pennsylvania, southern New Jersey, and northern Delaware.

Travel the World.

When you travel with the Council, you won't just experience the vacation of a lifetime, you'll also meet political leaders and local experts who give behind-the-scenes views and briefings that make our trips unique.

Discover "The Whole Truth."

Half hour episodes of the Council's public television series, which tackles some of the weightiest public affairs issues of our time, focus on global and long-term issues.

Featured Trip

February 28-13

Moroccan Discovery

Explore fascinating Morocco for 14 days on this small group tour, from seaside Rabat to the desert towns of Erfoud and Ouarzazate. Watch the sun set over the dunes on camelback, traverse the snow-topped High Atlas Mountains, and discover the many cultural treasures of storied Fez, Marrakech, and Casablanca. Special Council briefings and meetings will be added to the final itinerary.

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February 21-01

Passage Through the Panama Canal and Costa Rica

Cruise aboard Five-Star Le Dumont-d’Urville on a nine-day journey from the Costa Rican rainforest through the mighty locks of the Panama Canal. Experience a daylight passage through the canal and call at remote island paradises. Enjoy lectures by exclusive onboard study leaders throughout the itinerary.

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March 24-05

Insider's Japan

This truly fascinating, well-crafted 13-day small-group tour features urban and pastoral highlights, with Tokyo, cultural capital Kyoto, and magnificent Mt. Fuji. Engage in local life and head off the beaten path to the lovely historic cities of Takayama and Kanazawa. Discover Hiroshima reborn with an optional 3-day/2-night post-tour extension.

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April 10-26

Along Central Asia’s Silk Road

Traveling the ancient Silk Road connecting East and West, encounter a mélange of culture and religion, art and architecture that conjures tales of trade and treasure, intrigue and empire. On this exciting 17-day small group journey, relish the exotic – embracing the humanity shared with the welcoming people of Central Asia.

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April 30-09

Celtic Lands

Cruise for eight neights aboard the Five-Star small ship Le Dumont-d'Urville from Scotland to Wales, Ireland, England and France. Dwight David Eisenhower II and Allen Packwood will provide exclusive lectures. Enjoy guided excursions in each port of call, including the beaches of Normandy. Glasgow/Edinburgh Pre-Program and Paris/Giverny Post-Program Options.

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Education Programs

  1. 07 13

    Summer Global Leadership Seminar

    The 2020 Summer Global Leadership Seminar is a week-long summer program for high school students titled "Election 2020:...

July 07

Summer Global Leadership Seminar

The 2020 Summer Global Leadership Seminar is a week-long summer program for high school students titled "Election 2020: U.S. Foreign Policy and America's Role in the World". Students will explore this complex and fascinating topic and will hear from experts, policymakers and academic on the issues confronting America's political and foreign policy leaders. Students will engage in debates, activities and a culminating trip to Washington D.C. throughout the week.

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Season 5 Trailer

Season 5 of The Whole Truth premieres on public television stations nationwide spring/summer 2020—check your local listings!

Watch Now

The Council in the News

U.S. policy in Middle East pushes action without strategy | Opinion

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Democracy Demands Discourse | The Philadelphia Inquirer

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Poroshenko receives International Statesman Award | The Ukrainian Weekly

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  • It was a terrific week with many excellent speakers. I think it was the best IDC I’ve attended and I’ve been going since 2010. Thanks for putting together such a great week. Everything appeared to go off without a hitch, at least from the attendees' point of view. The clouds even parted and the rain stopped when the group arrived at the Taipei representatives office... I look forward to next year.

    Bill Korstad

    "Inside Washington, DC" traveler
  • On behalf of Bishop Shanahan High School's World Affairs Club students and myself, I would like to thank you for the opportunity that you provided us [to attend an event with Secretary Janet Napolitano]. As always the event was amazing. The chatter in the van on the drive home sealed the testimony--tiny screens and texts were no match for the impact of Madame Secretary Janet Napolitano on teens (and their teacher).

    Joan Hayes

    English Department and World Affairs Club Moderator at Bishop Shanahan High School
  • "[The Whole Truth is]…a refreshingly thoughtful look at the challenges facing our country and the world. No shouting, no talking over each other; just respectful debate and discussion.”

    The Exeter Bulletin

  • “When traveling abroad, we like to get the real ‘feel’ of the country through sight, sounds & smells. This trip accomplished all spades! History, architecture, political atmosphere, social situations and seeing the standard of living up close and personal. The music and spirit of the people can only truly be appreciated by being in the country. Many thanks for a wonderful experience!”

    Suzanne Simpson, CT

  • “[The Whole Truth brings the World Affairs Council of Philadelphia’s] lecture and discussion series, considered to be a jewel on the political and diplomatic circuit, to a wider audience, one that did not have to be present in a Philadelphia auditorium to partake or participate in often probing debates.”

    Delaware County Daily Times

  • “This tour was wonderful! Our Cuban guide was one of the best! She knew a lot of history as well as current issues.”

    Dianna Jabis, NY

  • “The Game Drives were the highlight of this trip. Seeing the large animals in their natural habitats was just spectacular!”

    Barbara Weiss, CA

Winner of Philadelphia Magazine's Best of Philly 2019 - Speaker Series