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Cornell University President David Skorton underscored the role and responsibility of higher education in combating poverty, malnutrition and violence on a global scale when he addressed the Cornell Institute for Public Affairs on Feb. 15.

Despite sincere relief efforts from the United Nations, the World Bank and other global organizations, more than 2 billion people continue to live on less than $2 a day. Through educational outreach, American universities can have a positive impact on these global issues, Skorton said.

The Global University Initiative, a concept of university-inspired global outreach, goes beyond study abroad programs to establish international research programs, inter-institutional collaborations and university branches abroad.

"Universities are among the most important assets, if not the most important asset, worldwide for improving personal, institutional and societal capacity and thereby permitting innovation and change," Skorton said.

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