Hertie School delegation travel to São Paulo for public policy conference

11 students and President Cornelia Woll discuss policy challenges in an ever more divided world

Last week, a delegation of students and faculty made the long journey across the globe to São Paulo, Brazil to take part in the 2023 GPPN (Global Public Policy Network) conference. Three teams comprised of eleven students were chosen to represent the Hertie School at this year’s event, which was hosted by our partner university, the Fundação Getulio Vargas São Paulo School of Business. The students were accompanied by President Cornelia Woll and Dean of Research and Faculty Kai Wegrich

Each team presented a proposal to solve a pressing public policy problem, with the overarching topic being “Policy challenges in an ever more divided world”. The three topics presented by the Hertie School teams were “Addressing gender bias in healthcare through patient advocacy”, “Deliberative democracy – Institutionalizing citizens' assemblies as a new lever to power” and “Illuminating the invisible: Overcoming gender inequality – Using data collection and analysis”. 

They were judged by a jury which included deans of the eight participating public policy schools and President Woll. The best teams were selected based on criteria such as the strength of their policy design, their awareness of stakeholder interests, and the quality of their presentation. “The jury was highly impressed by the quality of the proposals presented by the teams,” Woll declared when announcing the winning teams. “Coming to a decision proved quite difficult.” 

One of the three projects presented by the Hertie School, the proposal for deliberative democracy, was selected for the second round of the competition on Sunday, and even won special mention for presenting the most relevant project of the conference.

In addition to participating in the competition, the students took the opportunity to learn more about Brazilian politics, attending lectures and debates on Brazilian democracy and Brazil’s healthcare system, and also went on a guided tour of São Paulo. 

The GPPN conference is an annual conference organised by the Global Public Policy Network, a partnership of eight public policy schools all over the world, including the Hertie School. After the Hertie School hosted the GPPN conference in 2022, the 2024 edition of the conference will take place at Sciences Po in Paris. 

More about our experts

  • Cornelia Woll, President and Professor of International Political Economy
  • Kai Wegrich, Dean of Faculty and Research and Professor of Public Administration and Public Policy