The Lab was founded in 2012 by co-directors Derek Goldman, award-winning professional theater artist, leader in the field of global performance, and Professor of Theater & Performance Studies, and Ambassador Cynthia Schneider, Distinguished Professor in the Practice of Diplomacy and former US Ambassador to the Netherlands (1998-2001), as an outgrowth of a Convening on Global Performance, Civic Imagination, and Cultural Diplomacy. In that time, The Lab has emerged as a global leader, widely recognized as unique for its pioneering interdisciplinary approaches integrating the performing arts and international relations.

GU President John J. DeGioia and playwright/performer Anna Deavere Smith during reception following Deavere Smith’s residency of On Grace. (Photo by Rafael Suanes/Georgetown University)

A signature joint initiative between Georgetown’s School of Foreign Service and Georgetown College, The Lab has become a center of learning, practice, policy, and of global theater and performance that has a transformative impact on students and practitioners of international affairs. Unique in fusing these fields that have so much to learn from each other, and yet are traditionally separate, The Lab’s work humanizes global politics through performance, and empowers artists to engage productively with international affairs and foreign policy.