Topics: International Relations
Peace and Human Rights
Regional focus: Europe
North America
Origin: Canada
Fellowship: Richard von Weizs├Ącker Fellow

Dr. Axworthy has recently taken on the chairmanship of the World Refugee Council, a body established to develop solutions to problems in the current refugee system. He also serves as Board Chair of CUSO International, a Canadian based international development agency.

Until recently he was the President, and Vice Chancellor of the University of Winnipeg. In his ten years as president, he pioneered community learning programs for Aboriginal and low income youth. Prior to that, he served more than twenty years as an elected member of the Canadian Parliament holding several Cabinet posts. In the Trudeau government of 1980-84, he was Minister of Employment and Immigration and went through the resettlement of the "Boat People". During this period, the government initiated reforms that have since become widely used, such as the use of private sponsorship of refugees. From 1996-2000, Axworthy was Minister of Foreign Affairs and was known for his work in advancing the Human Security agenda that included the Treaty on anti-personnel landmines, the International Criminal Court, and the Protocol on Child Soldiers.

In 1997, he was nominated by United States Senator Patrick Leahy to receive the Nobel Peace Prize for his work on banning landmines. In 2002, he was awarded The Order of Canada, and in 2016, he was made a Companion, a promotion within the Order to the highest rank. In August 2017, The American Political Science Association awarded him the Hubert H. Humphrey award for notable public service. He holds a BA from the University of Winnipeg and Ph.D. from Princeton University.  

Last updated: 2017