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.

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

January 30-07

Passage through the Panama Canal and Costa Rica

Join this incomparable nine-day journey from the Costa Rican rainforest through the mighty locks of the Panama Canal. Cruise aboard the Five-Star LE CHAMPLAIN to experience a daylight passage through the Panama Canal and call at remote island paradises. Explore Costa Rica’s terrestrial wonders and tour Panama City.

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February 15-26

Legends of the Nile ~ featuring Cairo, Luxor, a Nile Cruise & Abu Simbel

Treat yourself to an exhilarating, small-group adventure along the Nile River, plus explorations in Cairo and Abu Simbel. This 10-night, active journey includes a deluxe, four-night cruise and the company of an expert Egyptologist who will guide you through the Pyramids of Giza, the Valley of the Kings and the magnificence of ancient Egypt.

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March 06-18

Amazon River Expedition and Machu Picchu

Cruise aboard the deluxe ZAFIRO for five nights through the Amazon River Basin’s unparalleled biodiversity and spend five nights exploring Perú’s landscapes and archaeological sites in the Sacred Valley, including legendary Machu Picchu and Cuzco. Led by naturalists, see rare endemic species and local villages. Lima Pre Program Option.

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March 17-28

Japan: Land of Cultural Treasures

Immerse yourself in Japan’s authenticity and incredible history on this 10-night journey. Enjoy stays in Tokyo, Hakone, Kanazawa and Kyoto, and connect with Japan’s distinctive heritage, timeless landmarks and enriching traditions. See Mt. Fuji, visit a colorful geisha district, cruise Lake Ashi and much more!

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March 27-11

Journey to Southern Africa

Embark on luxury safaris, thrill to Victoria Falls, & visit Soweto, Cape Town & Robben Island on an unmatched 12-night adventure through South Africa, Botswana & Zimbabwe!

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Education Programs

  1. 10 26

    Debate Series

    The 2021-22 Debate Series is scheduled for Tuesday, October 26th! Topic and more information to be announced soon!

  2. 12 08

    Model Senate

    The 2021 Model Senate program will explore the critical role of the legislative branch, and it's interactions with...

October 22 2021

Jr. Model United Nations

The Student Diplomat - Jr. Model United Nations Program is a five-month journey (January to May) that introduces over 750 middle school students to international affairs and cultural diplomacy. With an emphasis on developing students’ research, writing, cultural competency, and communication skills, the program helps meet the growing demand for global affairs curricula in local middle schools. Registration closes Friday, October 22nd.

Learn More

America's Role in the World

Bill Kristol, Director of Defending Democracy Together; Dr. Barry Posen, Ford International Professor of Political Science at MIT; and Michèle Flournoy, former Under Secretary of Defense for Policy, discuss what is and should be the right and best role for the United States in world affairs.

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