We confront the most urgent and complex challenges facing people and the planet.

By uniting critical scholarship and practice at the intersections of agricultural, environmental, life, and social sciences, we advance a more equitable, sustainable, and food-secure world for all. Side-by-side with our diverse network of global and community partners, we engage in education with impact and create a flourishing world now and for future generations.

With a focus on education with impact, our transdisciplinary approach emphasizes real-world engagement on a global scale — with communities in New York State, across the United States, and around the world. Our dynamic learning atmosphere and academic culture goes beyond purely technical work to provide a balance of skill-building and analytical coursework toward transformative solutions.

A multidisciplinary approach

The world is complex. But we believe understanding is possible.

Wellbeing and inclusion

“A World that Leaves No One Behind”

Studying the causes, manifestations and consequences of poverty and inequality in the global political economy, the histories and legacies of development projects, and alternative models to promote wellbeing

Environmental sustainability

“A Greener World and Greener Economies”

Addressing strategies to mitigate or reverse the effects of climate change, helping people and communities adapt to new environmental realities, and researching the social and political dimensions of human-environment interactions

Food and nutritional security

“Sustainable and Sustaining Food Systems”

Identifying pathways to sustainable food systems while investigating the social and political dynamics of these systems across the cycle from cultivation to distribution, consumption, and recycling

How will you change the world?

Latest news

Discover how Global Development is committed to making a sustainable impact

Mario Herrero

News

Herrero to bolster global dietary report with food system modeling
Mario Herrero, a professor in the Department of Global Development and a Cornell Atkinson Scholar, has been appointed to the EAT-Lancet 2.0 leadership team to spearhead the modeling workstream.
  • Cornell Atkinson
  • Department of Global Development
  • Environment
Three men stand around street food stand

News

The past half-century has seen dramatic changes in the ways food is produced, making diets more affordable for billions of people across the globe. But those gains have come with inequitable costs to human and environmental health, according to new research that points the way towards more sustainable ways to structure food systems.
  • Department of Global Development
  • Environment
  • Food
Group photo with NextGen team members

News

Canaan Boyer, project manager for NextGen Cassava, earned the 2022 CALS Core Value Staff Award for her commitment to inclusion for "one of the most successful crop breeding projects in the world."
  • Department of Global Development
  • School of Integrative Plant Science
  • Plant Breeding and Genetics Section

Land acknowledgement

Cornell University is located on the traditional homelands of the Gayogo̱hó꞉nǫ' (the Cayuga Nation). The Gayogo̱hó꞉nǫ' are members of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy, an alliance of six sovereign Nations with a historic and contemporary presence on this land. The Confederacy precedes the establishment of Cornell University, New York State and the United States of America. 

We acknowledge the painful history of Gayogo̱hó꞉nǫ' dispossession, and honor the ongoing connection of Gayogo̱hó꞉nǫ' people, past and present, to these lands and waters.