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.

The Importance of Global Affairs Education: Investing in Tomorrow's World Leaders

Join the World Affairs Council of Philadelphia for an event series and campaign to highlight the importance of global affairs education

Join the Council

Become a member to provide year-long support of global affairs education for the youth of Philadelphia. New members who join during this time will have a chance to win some great internationally-themed prizes!

Make a lasting impact

Donate to support the Council’s work opening the minds and horizons of the youth of Philadelphia and unlock a special 40th birthday gift for one of the Council’s most important educational partners – the William W. Bodine High School for International Affairs.

Support more than 2,500 Philadelphia students

95% of the world’s population and 85% of global economic growth is outside of the United States. 14% of Philadelphians are foreign-born. Help the Council to prepare Philadelphia’s youth – the next generation of political, cultural, and economic leaders – for success in an increasingly international workforce.

Meet other globally-minded Philadelphians

Learn more about what students experience when they engage with the Council as part of a campaign highlighting global affairs education! Join friends and supporters of the Council at International Quizzo @ Love City Brewing, at virtual iThrive simulations of real-world decision making, and at a virtual conversation centering on what comes next for Afghanistan.

Featured Trip

May 01-09

River Life Along the Dutch Waterways

Cruise for seven nights in Holland and Flanders aboard the exclusively chartered, deluxe AMADEUS STAR. Meet local residents during the exclusive River Life Forum and tour the Kröller-Müller Museum. Visit Amsterdam, Bruges, Ghent, Delft, Kinderdijk, Antwerp, Keukenhof and the Floriade World Horticulture Expo. Amsterdam Pre-Program and The Hague Post-Program Options.

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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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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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June 03-10

Scottish Isles and Norwegian Fjords

Join us for a unique journey to Scotland’s rarely visited Orkney and Shetland Islands and Norway’s majestic coastal fjords. Cruise from Glasgow to Bergen aboard the Le Champlain. Including a highlight to the sites of Orkney Island’s Neolithic Ring of Brodgar and Skara Brae, including a special presentation by the Ness of Brodgar archaeological site director and head archaeologist.

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June 05-13

Fairytale France - Alsace

Behold the old-world allure and proud heritage of France’s Alsace region on an unforgettable 7-night program. From charming Colmar, visit Strasbourg, Basel, and whimsical towns along the Alsatian Wine Route. Plus, savor divine cuisine and wines, and learn about the region’s illustrious past.

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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.

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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

Bodine High School for International Affairs celebrates 40 years | The Philadelphia Tribune

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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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  • 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