There is a clear need for a coordinated, interdisciplinary and international scientific response to global challenges such as COVID-19 and climate change. Although the Fourth Industrial Revolution is accelerating technological innovation, there are new economic, societal and geopolitical hurdles to advancing scientific collaboration in the future. The Global Future Council on Scientific Collaboration aims to identify new forms of public-private collaboration and propose novel ways to mitigate emerging risks to scientific research. Key outputs will include a landscape assessment of global scientific collaboration as it stands today and concrete proposals for safeguarding international collaboration in research in the years ahead.