Spero to speak on global philanthropy, governance

Joan Edelman Spero, a University of Wisconsin–Madison alumna with a long and distinguished career in international affairs, business and philanthropy, will speak on “Global Philanthropy and Global Governance,” on Wednesday, May 7, sponsored by the Madison Committee on Foreign Relations and the UW–Madison Division of International Studies.

Joan E Spero
Joan E Spero

The program will be held at the University Club, 803 State St., with registration and hors d’oeuvres at 5:30 p.m., and program at 6 p.m.

Spero received her B.A. in international relations from UW–Madison in 1966, and went on to earn her master’s degree in international affairs Ph.D. in political science from Columbia University. She currently serves as a senior research scholar at Columbia’s School of International and Public Affairs.

In 2009-10, she was a visiting fellow at the Foundation Center, where she conducted research on the role of American private foundations in U.S. foreign policy and in the global system culminated with the 2010 publication The Global Role of U.S. Foundations.

In her talk, she will discuss the global growth of global philanthropy and its role in global governance.  Using case studies, she will illustrate the role that private foundations play in addressing global problems such as engaging in diplomacy, and forming new partnerships and coalitions with governments, international organizations, civil society, and business.

Throughout her distinguished career, Spero has served in numerous prominent positions, including president of the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation (1997–2008), U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Economic and Social Council (1980-81), and Undersecretary of State for Economic, Business, and Agricultural Affairs (1993-97). She held several positions at American Express Company (1981-93), the last being executive vice president, corporate affairs and communications.

She serves as a trustee of the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF) and the Morgridge Institute for Research, as well as a director of the International Center for Transitional Justice.  She has served as a trustee of Columbia University, Amherst College, the Council on Foreign Relations, and the Brookings Institution.  Spero is a director of IBM and International Paper.

To register for this program, go to the MCFR website: http://mcfr.wildapricot.org/. There is a $20 fee for guests.