International Organizations


Providing on-the-ground support after a natural disaster in a remote country. Promoting policies that will improve the economic and social well-being of people around the world. Bringing the best minds together to solve the world’s pressing economic issues. These are everyday challenges that confront international organizations. Your mission attracts diversity, bringing together bright, talented people who are specialists in their fields. At Wharton Executive Education, we are committed to helping those specialists expand their skills and become true leaders.


Wharton Executive Education has experience working with international organizations to help their people work across borders and build collaborative environments to increase their level of impact across the world. Our expertise includes:

Collaborative Program Design

We partner with you to identify your organization’s challenges. Then, we create the educational program that will work with the highly committed members of your organization to make the impact necessary for your organization to take on the most pressing global challenges.

Management and Leadership Education

Specialists can make great leaders, but first, they need to learn how. Many talented people rise in international organizations based on their technical expertise. Many of these talented people also have great potential, or significant inherent leadership skills. We help these high potentials to hone their leadership skills, fill in business knowledge gaps as needed, and achieve excellence in high-level skills such as persuasion and managing uncertainty. Additionally, we can work with an organization to identify and develop leaders within the organization, articulate key leadership skills required to lead change that can meet strategic objectives, and strengthen peer exchange and networks.

Strategic Thinking

In today’s competitive funding environment, on-the-ground decisions must be tied to an organization’s overall mission. International organizations need to help people as well as provide measurable results to funders or other important stakeholders. A truly successful leader can tie a team’s action to the organization’s goals, quantify the success, and report it so that a sponsor, funder or other important stakeholder can understand the impact. High-functioning leaders ensure that an organization will be able to make a positive impact on the developed and developing countries of the world.

We also create transformative programs around such crucial business topics as:

  • Innovation
  • Managing Uncertainty
  • Emotional Intelligence
  • Critical Thinking
  • Influence And Persuasion
  • Ethics
  • Effective Communication
  • Social Impact
  • Social Capital Building
  • Corporate Social Responsibility

By tailoring each custom program to your organization’s needs, we deliver knowledge for immediate impact.

Thought Leadership

We educate emerging leaders so that they can develop the full range of skills necessary to lead complex global organizations and promote innovation for the betterment of humanity.

In creating a custom engagement, we may draw on Wharton resources such as:

Wharton Center for Human Resources

The Center for Human Resources is a dynamic hub for academics and practitioners who specialize in human resources. Through this unique partnership, faculty share their latest research with our corporate members, who in turn benefit from numerous opportunities to network with fellow HR executives from around the country and around the world, allowing them access to the most current thinking on such topics as talent management, labor relations, workforce training and education, and diversity. Visit the Center's website »

Wharton Risk Management and Decision Processes Center

Established in 1984, the Wharton Risk Management and Decision Processes Center is a nexus of people and projects devoted to furthering the practical understanding of how to manage situations of risk involving health, safety, and the environment in both the private and public sectors of our society. For more than 25 years, the Center has been at the forefront of research into the management of low-probability/high-consequence events. In addition to working on programs of basic and applied research, Risk Center faculty serve on national and international advisory committees, with partnerships in government, academia, industry, and NGOs.

Building on the disciplines of economics, decision sciences, finance, insurance, and marketing, the Center's research program is focused on descriptive research and prescriptive analyses. Descriptive research focuses on how individuals and organizations interact and make decisions regarding the management of risk. Prescriptive analyses propose ways that individuals and organizations, both private and governmental, can make better decisions regarding risk. The Center supports and undertakes field and experimental studies of risk and uncertainty to better understand the link between descriptive and prescriptive approaches to decision making to cope with technological and natural hazards under various regulatory, environmental, and market conditions. Center research investigates the effectiveness of strategies, such as incentive systems, insurance, regulation, and the communication of risk information. Visit the Center's website »

Center for Leadership and Change Management

Increasingly, organizations worldwide must confront turbulent markets, demanding shareholders, and discerning customers, and many firms are restructuring to meet these challenges. Their success depends largely on the quality of leadership that exists at all levels of management. Dedicated to building a basic and practical understanding of leadership and change, the Center explores and communicates effective strategies for restructuring. Visit the Center's website »

Tools & Solutions

We have partnered with some of the world’s leading international organizations to create a range of transformative executive education experiences. Some examples of solutions we have used in custom education engagements include:

Organization of Economic and Cooperative Development (OECD)

The Organization of Economic and Cooperative Development (OECD) engaged Wharton to conduct a leadership program focused on developing high-level leadership skills and competencies. The OECD invited several other international agencies to nominate high-potential leaders to attend. The diverse group included talent from the IMF, WTO, IADB, BIS, ECB, ADB and others.

Areas of focus during this four-day program included strategic decision making, communication, performance management and strategic persuasion. Robust, cross-agency conversation and learning facilitated by Wharton faculty enabled these emerging leaders to see themselves as the results-oriented, innovative, efficient and effective leaders they can be. The vision of this program, set forth by the OECD, will help them and other international agencies to create a responsive, flexible pipeline of leaders who can maintain the high standards of their policy agendas in an ever-changing global environment.


The UNDP is the United Nations’ global development network, an organization that advocates for change and connects countries to knowledge, experience and resources to build better lives. To assist with the UNDP’s cultural change, the UNDP Bureau of Crisis Prevention and Recovery partnered with Wharton to develop a leadership program for 30 high-potential mid-level executives who are required to lead organizational change and meet strategic objectives. Per the identified strategic objectives, the program focused on developing leadership capabilities such as emotional intelligence, communication, collaboration across teams/divisions, and strategy execution. Wharton engaged a coaching partner who began the program with a 360 degree assessment and then provided supplemental pre and post program coaching. This four-day program, led by key Wharton faculty, ensured a common baseline of management and leadership skills and created a community of “coaching buddies” who after the program remain connected to assist with knowledge application and support for challenges that will assist with the transformation expectations of the UNDP.

Women’s World Banking

Women’s World Banking partnered with Wharton to develop a program that would allow its members to build a global understanding, increase strategic and critical thinking, and drive stronger customer-centric innovation. Fifty of the world’s top-rated microfinance institutions sent nearly 100 representatives from 14 countries to this advanced leadership program. The group included both veteran leaders with the mission of MFIs “in their DNA” and managers who are new to the microfinance industry.

World Economic Forum Global Leadership Fellows Program

Wharton works closely with the World Economic Forum (WEF) to offer three Global Leadership Fellows Programs over a three-year period. Initiated by University of Pennsylvania President Amy Gutmann and Wharton Dean Thomas Robertson to strengthen the University of Pennsylvania’s ties with the WEF, the programs give participants the opportunity to work full-time at WEF while receiving intensive practical and analytical training to develop key skills for thriving in global leadership and management roles. WEF’s selection process for all three programs is highly competitive. Fellows already have advanced degrees and are fluent in multiple languages, and their roles in the private and public sector involve direct engagement with world leaders, heads of state or CEOs.

A total of 227 fellows have completed the Global Leadership Fellows Personal Power and Influence (PPI) and Social Impact (SI) Programs since they were launched in 2009. Forty-five leaders have completed the Directors Program, now in its third year.


  • Sigal Barsade, PhD

    Joseph Frank Bernstein Professor; Professor of Management, The Wharton School

    Research Interests: Emotional intelligence, organizational culture, team dynamicsSee Faculty Bio

  • Peter Cappelli, DPhil

    George W. Taylor, Professor of Management; Director, Center for Human Resources, The Wharton School

    Research Interests: Human resource practices, public policy related to employment, talent and performance managementSee Faculty Bio

  • Michael Useem, PhD

    William and Jacalyn Egan Professor of Management; Editor, Wharton Leadership Digest; Director, Center for Leadership and Change Management, The Wharton School

    Research Interests: Catastrophic and enterprise risk management, corporate change and restructuring, leadership, decision making, governanceSee Faculty Bio