The Paris Institute of Political Studies (French: Institut d’Études Politiques de Paris, French pronunciation: [ɛ̃s.ti.ty de.tyd pɔ.li.tik də pa.ʁi]), commonly referred to as Sciences Po (French pronunciation: [sjɑ̃s po]), is a prestigious and influential academic institution in the social sciences in France (legally a grande école). It was founded in 1872 to promote a new class of French politicians in the aftermath of the French defeat in the Franco-Prussian War of 1871,  and remains the primary institution of higher learning for French political and administrative elite.
Sciences Po Alumni include 32 heads of state or government, 7 of the past 8 French Presidents, 3 past heads of the International Monetary Fund, heads of international organizations (including the UN, WTO, IMF and ECB), and six of the CAC 40 CEOs. The school has also educated numerous intellectual and cultural figures, such as Marcel Proust, René Rémond, Paul Claudel, and Raymond Aron. In 2018, it was ranked as the world’s 4th best school for politics and international studies.
Sciences Po undertook an ambitious reform agenda starting in the mid-1990s, which broadened its focus to prepare students for the private sector, put an emphasis on the internationalization of the school’s curriculum and student body, and established a special admission process for underprivileged applicants. It also expanded outside Paris by establishing additional campuses in Dijon, Le Havre, Menton, Nancy, Poitiers, and Reims. The institution is a member of the Association of Professional Schools of International Affairs and the Global Public Policy Network
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