Past Events

Each year The Pearson Institute hosts a variety of lectures, workshops and seminars. Unless noted otherwise, all events are held on the University of Chicago campus.


African Solutions to African Challenges

An overused cliche or a powerful operating model that delivers practical solutions?

The Pearson Institute's April Speaker Series will feature Ambassador Martin Kimani, Permanent Representative of Kenya to the UN.

This presentation will argue for the urgent need for African agency to lead in tackling and solving Africa's most pressing challenges and against models of problem solving that privilege external interventions.

Ambassador Kimani will use examples drawn from Kenya, the Horn of Africa, and the UN Security Council to illustrate the powerful difference made to peace and security when the international community and people of goodwill respect and support African leadership.

Friday, April 22, 2022

12:15 PM - 1:15 PM

Keller Center, Room 0001




Why We Fight: The Roots of War and the Paths to Peace

Most people think war is easy and peace is hard. In a new book, Why We Fight, Professor Chris Blattman argues that, in fact, war is hard and finding peace is easier than you think. From warring states to street gangs, violence is not the norm, and there are five reasons why conflict wins over compromise.  

This event is presented by the Harris School of Public Policy, The Pearson Institute for the Study and Resolution of Global Conflicts, and the Development Economics Center at the Becker Friedman Institute for Research in Economics. 

This event will be presented in both the in-person and virtual format. Copies of Why We Fight will be available for purchase in-person following the event. 

Tuesday, April 19, 2022

5:30 PM — 6:30 PM CDT

David Rubenstein Forum 
1201 E. 60th Street
Chicago, IL 60637
United States



Africa's Latent Assets and the Future with James Robinson

London Business School is holding an online course on African Economic History February to April 2022.

The Pearson Institute Director James Robinson will be joining April 12 to teach a plenary session on Africa's assets and future. 

This masterclass aims to familiarize students with insights into the recent, burgeoning literature on the impact of Africa’s history on contemporary development (JEL review). The online course will cover recent economic history contributions that use geospatial data from anthropological maps, colonial archives, secondary sources, and other sources to uncover the legacies of these phenomena. 


James Robinson in Ukraine

Institute Director James Robinson presents themes from his internationally bestselling book, Why Nations Fail, at an event in Ukraine.