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Partner Universities

We currently support partnerships with five of France’s most prestigious institutions of higher learning. Each partnership emphasizes disciplinary orientations that reflect strengths at both institutions.

Institut d'Etudes Politiques de Paris

Image of students standing on the street outside a building on the Sciences Po campus.

Northwestern maintains a special and well-established partnership with the Institut d'Etudes Politiques de Paris, or Sciences Po, dating back to 1997. Sciences Po is a highly selective Parisian center of humanistic and social scientific study with over 200 faculty members working in five overarching disciplines:

  • Law
  • Economics
  • History
  • Political science
  • Sociology

Some of the institution’s Paris-based research units include:

Exchanges and programs

We organize short-term exchanges between the two institutions for undergraduates, graduates and faculty members as well as coordinate a dual PhD program.


In addition to organizing many short-term exchanges, we facilitate many long-term collaborations, as well.

Research projects

Among the ongoing research projects, scholars from Northwestern and Sciences Po are currently studying Security and Governance in Africa.

Joint publications

Our collaborations are not always limited to the seminar room, but also result in publishing successes. For instance, the conference “Law and Globalization in a Comparative Perspective: The Interwar Versus the Post-Cold War Periods,” organized by Grégoire Mallard (Northwestern) and Jérôme Sgard (Sciences Po), was convened in Paris in December 2013.

The proceedings from this conference went on to be published by Cambridge University Press as Contractual Knowledge: One Hundred Years of Legal Experimentation in Global Markets in 2016.

École Normale Supérieure de Lyon

Image of students walking in on the ENS Lyon campus.

Research carried out at the École Normale Supérieure de Lyon, or the ENS de Lyon, covers fields of exact sciences, social sciences and the humanities.

Northwestern’s collaboration with the institution based in the city of Lyon began with a focus on medieval and early modern studies; this initial concentration has since expanded. Today, graduate and faculty exchanges are loosely organized under the interdisciplinary umbrella of literature, theory and philosophy.

This rubric has allowed participation in several of the ENS de Lyon’s research groups including:


Current opportunities include faculty exchanges and graduate student exchanges. Joint areas of research interests currently include:

École Normale Supérieure

Image of students standing in a campus courtyard.

The prestigious École Normale Supérieure, or ENS Paris, located in Paris’s Latin Quarter hosts research in a number of humanistic fields including:

  • Archeology and the science of texts
  • History of the medieval
  • Modern and contemporary worlds
  • French and comparative literature
  • Philosophy
  • Critical theory
  • Sciences of contemporary societies: sociology, economics, political science, law and geography

Northwestern’s strong relationship with ENS Paris has flourished recently with the establishment of the Tri-University Dissertation Workshop. This multi-year series of workshops between Northwestern, ENS Paris and Goethe University in Frankfurt provides a space for Northwestern graduate students in the critical theory cluster to connect with peers working in related fields in Europe.

In addition to benefiting from the rich network of friends and collaborators at ENS Paris, Northwestern graduate students and faculty members may make the most of libraries and archives through enrollment in a dual PhD or a graduate exchange.

Sorbonne Nouvelle University

Image of a building that says Sorbonne Nouvell Paris III.

A leading institution for education and research in the humanities, the Sorbonne Nouvelle University is especially known for its programs in Cinema and Audio-Visual Studies, Contemporary Literature, Theatre Studies and Communication Studies. The Sorbonne Nouvelle University promotes scientific strategies in modern humanities with an emphasis on three key themes:

  • Artistic and literary processes in modern and contemporary creations
  • Codes, discursive practices, types of representation and didactics
  • The construction of cultural zones (Europe, the Americas, the Orient) and their interaction

École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales

Image of building on EHESS campus with a blossoming tree out front.

Research at the internationally-recognized Parisian institution École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, or the EHESS, encompasses: history, sociology, anthropology, economics, geography, archeology, psychology and linguistics

The focus on interdisciplinarity across fields, as well as the EHESS’s connections with other Parisian institutions, allows a good deal of flexibility for Northwestern faculty exchanges and students in the dual PhD program. There are particularly strong and ongoing collaborations with scholars in Northwestern’s Department of Sociology and Program in African Studies.

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