Global Chicago was comissioned the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation in 1999. The project was designed to help illuminate the challenges and opportunities facing the Chicago region as it adapts to a new global order. A guiding assumption of the project has been that the most effective responses to globalization are those that address the needs and concerns of all stakeholders. Another major goal of the project has been to bring to light the depth and range of international activity that already occurs here in Chicago.
America’s cities are becoming increasingly important actors on the global stage. The idea that cities must reflexively submit to impersonal global forces is giving way to the recognition that civic and community leaders can shape a city’s response to global trends. Chicago is no exception. Whether through the economic activity of its multinational corporations or through exchanges between its many ethnic communities and their homelands, Chicago’s connections to the world are expanding and becoming increasingly complex.
Richard C. Longworth, senior fellow at The Chicago Council, authored one of the featured reports entitled “Chicago as a Global City.”