Graduate Institute appoints first female director
Marie Laure Salles-Djelic has been appointed as the new head of the Geneva-based Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies.
Salles-Djelic, a French national, will take over from Philippe Burrin on September 2020, the Graduate Institute announced on Tuesday.
She is currently dean of the School of Management and Innovation at Sciences Po, Paris, a school that she helped establish. Holder of a PhD in Sociology from Harvard University, she is already familiar with the Geneva institute having spent a year as a visiting professor as well as a visiting fellow at the Global Governance Centre.
Salles-Djelic said she was “honoured” to be chosen and her first objective would be to continue the school’s development as a “world-renowned academic and research institution with a vision to attract the best students and researchers”.
The Graduate Institute is dedicated to the study of world affairs, focusing on international relations and development issues. It was created in 1927 after the establishment of the League of Nations – the forerunner of the United Nations – in Geneva following World War 1 and linked to the need to provide students and the future personnel of international organisations with appropriate training in diplomacy and international relations.
Located in the heart of the city’s international district, the school has benefited from close ties and synergies with the United Nations agencies, international organisations, NGOs, governments and multinational companies based there.
Former students include former UN secretary-general Kofi Annan, ex-Swiss foreign minister Micheline Calmy-Rey and former director-general of the International Atomic Energy Agency Mohamed El Baradei.