Institute for Human Sciences


The Institute for Human Sciences (IWM) is an independent institute - registered as a non-profit organisation - for advanced study in the humanities and social sciences. Founded in 1982 by a group of young scholars, the IWM’s purpose was, and remains, to bring together academics and intellectuals from Eastern and Western Europe – their ideas and experiences – into a common discussion. The focus of attention has expanded over the years and now covers not only the new members of the EU but also their own eastern neighbours. At the same time, the IWM has also oriented itself to North America. With the support of its affiliate, the Institute for Human Sciences at Boston University, it contributes to policy and cultural dialogue between Europe and the United States and Canada.

The IWM is sustained by a community of scholars consisting of Permanent Fellows, Visiting Fellows and Junior Visiting Fellows, as well as Non-Resident Permanent Fellows. During each year the IWM hosts about 40 fellows and guests, among them scholars as well as journalists and translators, who come from Eastern and Western Europe and from the United States to spend approximately one semester at the Institute.

Independent and intensive research represents one aspect of work at the Institute; engagement in analysis and public discourse about social and political issues is of equal importance. No ivory tower, the IWM regularly organizes lectures, discussion rounds and conferences for a broad public, and launches policy-related programs.

Research at the Institute is currently focused on five fields:

  • The New Europe: In Search of its Intellectual, Social and Political Identity
  • Sources of Inequality
  • Cultures and Institutions: Central and Eastern Europe in a Global Context
  • United Europe – Divided Memory
  • The Philosophical Work of Jan Patocka

Source: IWM Website, as accessed on February 23, 2009.


Contact details
Phone:+43-1-313 58 - 0
Fax:+43-1-313 58 - 30
Address: Spittelauer Lände 3 1090 Wien
Geographical focus
  • International; Other
  • SEE

Entry created by Katarina Rohsmann on February 23, 2009
Modified on February 23, 2009