Leadership programmes

University partners

We work with universities to develop future leaders with Cultural Intelligence.

Students on a programme in Fudan

Students get out of the classroom in Johannesburg

Many universities around the world recognize the importance of giving students opportunities to develop skills outside of their academic curriculum. That’s why our co-curricular leadership programmes take students out of the classroom and into the city to develop real-world leadership skills.

On a Common Purpose programme, students learn to be leaders who can cross boundaries—at work and in society. Our extensive and diverse network means that we are able to give students a unique insight into different businesses and organizations in their own city and in cities across the world.

Students hear from leaders in Belo Horizonte

We deliver programmes that can address your university’s needs in terms of both outbound and inbound mobility. Our Study Abroad programme takes students abroad to a new city to develop their Cultural Intelligence (CQ) — the ability to cross divides and thrive in multiple cultures. Whilst our Global Leader Experience develops students’ CQ as they tackle a real-world challenge within an international group.

The result is a global network of students who are equipped to create change in the world around them - at university, in their cities and in their future careers.

Study Abroad

We take students abroad for an intense leadership experience. Students get beneath the surface of a new city and develop Cultural intelligence in the process.

Global Leader Experiences

One hundred students from a minimum of 25 countries work together over four days to tackle real global challenges and develop their Cultural Intelligence.


Students connect with real world leaders and go behind the scenes at local organizations. By learning how to lead change in their city, they are more prepared for life after graduation. These programmes are only open to students invited by their university.

CQ Online

Common Purpose has created CQ Online—an online programme that enables universities to develop students with Cultural Intelligence (CQ)— at scale.

Westpac Asian Exchange Scholarship

We are delighted to be working with Westpac Bicentennial Foundation to deliver a bespoke 12 months leadership development programme as part of the Westpac Asian Exchange Scholarship. Follow the stories of four Westpac Asian Exchange Scholars and hear first-hand their learnings and experiences over the programme.

If you have any questions or want to find out more:

Contact Andy Coxall, Chief Executive, Common Purpose Student Experiences.

We have worked with:

Rakesh Khurana, Dean, Harvard College

"In our ever more complex and interconnected world which has no obvious historical parallel, Common Purpose has developed a breakthrough idea about the importance of cultural intelligence (CQ) in order to navigate both this new world and its contradictions. It has important implications and raises questions about our current systems for those of us involved in educating and developing our future global citizens."

Our impact

Shuvo Saha, Director, Google Digital Academy, Trustee, Common Purpose Charitable Trust

"When students from diverse backgrounds and nationalities work and learn together, it provides a huge boost to their Cultural Intelligence, preparing them to become the leaders of the future”

Common Purpose Global Leader Experience: China 2015
Common Purpose - Westpac Asian Exchange Scholarship Leadership Development Programme
Professor Bernard Tan, Vice Provost (Undergraduate Education), National University of Singapore

"As policy makers and scientists strive to devise innovative solutions to challenges to make the growth of cities sustainable, it is apt to engage the future generation of leaders in this exciting venture."