Global Thought Leadership Institute at APQC

A picture of the GTLI logo that has a blue swoosh around the G and the L in name

The Global Thought Leadership Institute (GTLI) is a not-for-profit organization advocating for the standardized practice, production, and promotion of thought leadership. Through its network of world class thought leaders, researchers, marketers, editors, designers, influencers, and others, GTLI promotes the development of distinctive, evidence-based intelligence that gives business leaders the insights they need to make better decisions. The Institute serves as a strategic resource in thought leadership through: 


The Development and Issuance of Standards

GTLI is the body that helps guide the producers of content and the consumers of thought leadership in what is real and what is not, what they should pay attention to, and what are considered the best practices.


Furthering the Profession Through Education and Training Programs

A lot of organizations don’t know how to leverage thought leadership effectively. We want to show them how to use their high-quality content to drive demand.


Connecting of Professionals at Hosted Events

We want to bring the best in the community together to share best practices and hear keynotes and panel discussions from noted experts on the topic of thought leadership creation and dissemination.

icon of people connected via a network

Who Should Be Interested?

Participation in the Institute and its programs is open to any professional or firm in the thought leadership ecosystem. As a non-partisan, non-profit organization, APQC views the creation and sharing of knowledge as paramount to the success of thought leadership as a business practice.

Through the development of templates, business rules, practice standards (including guardrails for the use of generative AI), measurement models, certifications, training programs, and events, the Institute seeks to ensure thought leadership continues to provide value for all audiences:

  • For business executives using thought leadership for decision-making, the value comes in knowing that the information and analysis are trusted, credible, thorough, and evidence-based; and 
  • For thought leadership content producers, the value comes in leveraging a best-practices framework and in measuring the results of investment.

Why Did APQC Form the Institute?


Advocating for standardized practice, production, and promotion of trusted thought leadership.


  • Bring the best thought leadership organizations and individuals together for unrivaled authority.
  • Promote understanding of the value of thought leadership.
  • Implement industry-wide guardrails around the ethical use of generative AI and other emerging technologies.

Across the globe, organizations spend billions annually on thought leadership. Thought leadership is used to inform major business decisions. A lack of standards in how that thought leadership is produced exposes substantial risk and uncertainty. The Global Thought Leadership Institute at APQC is a groundbreaking effort to create a network of world-class thinkers, researchers, marketers, designers, and influencers who will develop frameworks and standards for creating and sharing thought leadership, ensuring that it remains an authoritative, credible, and a positive influence on the industry.

A picture of lisa higgins in a purple dress standing in front of a black wall.

Global Institute for Thought Leadership Board of Advisors

APQC has convened a Board of Advisors to assist in the formation and launch of this important initiative. The Advisors will identify and shape best practices, review and refine standards, and help advance the practice of thought leadership.

• Anthony Marshall; Senior Research Director, Thought Leadership, IBM Institute for Business Value
• Cindy W. Anderson; CMO, Global Lead for Engagement & Eminence; IBM Institute for Business Value
• Elisabeth (Liz) Bolshaw; Global Content Strategist; EY
• Francis Hintermann; Global Research Executive Director; Accenture
• Jeff Potter; Managing Director, Lead of Advisory Insights, KPMG LLP
• Lucia Rahilly; Global Editorial Director & Deputy Publisher; McKinsey & Company
• Kate Vitasek; Distinguished Fellow, Global Supply Chain Institute/Faculty, Graduate & Executive Education; University of Tennessee

As executives grow immune to many traditional marketing tactics, thought leadership sends an open invitation to connect. It demonstrates expertise and solves real-world problems. Rather than pushing leaders through a conversion funnel, it pulls them into more meaningful relationships based on trust. I am honored to be part of the creation of this important Institute, and I look forward to working with my colleagues to build a credible, trusted organization that advances the practice of thought leadership.

A picture of Anthony Marshall in a black suite standing inside the APQC Headquarters in front of a window

Interested in Learning More About the Institute?

A banner with the Houston Skyline announcing the first symposium