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Vice Provost for International Affairs

Wendy Wolford, vice provost for international affairs since 2018, sees global engagement as the central way to “grapple with the big problems in the world today”—and a responsibility shared by the entire Cornell community.

Wendy Wolford headshot

Wolford is Robert A. and Ruth E. Polson Professor of Global Development in the Department of Global Development in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. Since 2018, Wolford has served as the university’s vice provost for international affairs.

Wolford is an expert on land distribution, use, and governance around the world. She has worked for many years in Brazil and, more recently, in Ecuador and Mozambique, collaborating with local researchers, community members, policymakers, and multilateral organizations. Wolford has published several books, including This Land is Ours Now, about the Brazilian social movement, the Rural Landless Workers (Duke University Press, 2010), and a co-edited volume, The Social Lives of Land (Cornell University Press, 2024). Her most recent book, The Elusive Plantation, is currently under review. Wolford was a fellow in the Yale Agrarian Studies Program in 2004–05 and a Fulbright Research Scholar in 2016–17 and has received support from the National Science Foundation, Mellon, Ford, the Social Science Research Council, and more.

"In an era of persistent inequality and shared vulnerabilities, it is our collective obligation to be good global citizens."

As vice provost for international affairs, Wolford supports the university’s international community and focuses on strengthening the university’s many global connections and interdisciplinary initiatives. Under her leadership, the university has created the Global Hubs partnerships, Global Grand Challenges, and increased support for Scholars Under Threat.

At Home in the World

Stone entrance to Cornell with nameplate.

Wendy spoke at the Cornell Leadership Week lunch in March 2022 and focused on how Cornell has "always been at home in the world." Enjoy the remarks and accompanying slides.

Vice Provost In the News

Full listing

Cornell delegation enhances global ties with Global Hubs partner the University of Ghana, tackling education, public health, and climate change, fostering collaboration and cultural exchange.


Vice Provost Wendy Wolford presented "The Elusive Plantation: Imagining Development in Mozambique" at the London School of Economics and Political Science.

In November 2023, the Cornell-China Forum, hosted in Guangzhou, China, showed Cornell's research and commitment to addressing urgent global challenges and collaborations with a global scope, with Vice Provost Wolford delivering the opening remarks.


Global Cornell leadership visited India in April, where they met with alumni and institutional partners.