Established in 2019, Illinois Global Institute is home to the area and global studies centers and thematic programs at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. IGI is dedicated to fostering an environment where international perspectives are integral to teaching and research.


Staff and administrators of Illinois Global Institute, area study centers, and thematic programs These 11 centers and programs develop global awareness and cultural competency through a combination of faculty research and professional development, curricular internationalization, student-life activities, international experiences, and outreach and public engagement.  

Through the centers and programs in IGI, students have opportunities to learn languages and to pursue interdisciplinary programs of undergraduate and graduate study engaging with world regions and themes. The Institute and the centers and programs also support faculty research on international themes in global, regional, and national contexts, and encourage research collaboration between scholars at Illinois and their peer institutions throughout the world.

Illinois Global Institute Advisory Committee:


IGI By the Numbers

2019 - Illinois Global Institute established

1948 - First Center established (Russian, East European, and Eurasian Center - REEEC)

11 - Area and Global Studies Centers and Thematic Programs

21 - Undergraduate and graduate Majors/Minors and Certificates offered across centers

31 - Languages supported on campus

600 - Affiliated faculty across centers and programs

$1.97m - Scholarship and fellowship funding for UIUC students in 2023

120 - Scholarships and fellowships awarded in 2023

418 – Events open to the public in 2023

175 – Educational outreach activities

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Why was the Illinois Global Institute created?
A: Establishing the Illinois Global Institute has created an opportunity to forge the existing Area and Global Centers as well as our International Thematic Programs into a prominent university hub that better serves faculty, students, and the community, pursuing the University of Illinois’  commitment to global impact.

Q: What area study centers and programs make up Illinois Global Institute?
A:  There are 11 area and global studies centers and thematic programs under the IGI umbrella. Those include:

  • Center for African Studies
  • Center for East Asian & Pacific Studies
  • Center for Global Studies
  • Center for Latin American & Caribbean Studies
  • Center for South Asian & Middle Eastern Studies
  • European Union Center
  • LAS Global Studies
  • The Lemann Center for Brazilian Studies
  • Program in Arms Control and Domestic and International Security
  • Russian, East European, and Eurasian Center
  • Women & Gender in Global Perspectives

Q: What benefits do Illinois students see from IGI?
A: “The Centers and Programs create an incredible range of opportunities for students to learn about the world and to develop tools for asking meaningful questions, especially through language learning and international experiences,” said Prof. Dávila, executive director of the Illinois Global Institute and the Jorge Paulo Lemann Chair in Brazilian History.
Many of the centers and programs offer major/minors and/or certificate programs. There are also many opportunities for students to apply for scholarships, grants, and fellowships such as FLAS (Foreign Language Area Studies). One of the IGI goals is to bring more awareness to the students, both undergraduate and graduate, about these opportunities.
Maimouna Barro, Associate Director for the Center for African Studies states “[T]he Center for African Studies (CAS) is committed to building interdisciplinary African Studies expertise at University of Illinois and engagement in the Champaign-Urbana community, in partnership with other university units and higher educational institutions in central Illinois. Ultimately, we seek to promote comprehensive understandings and connections with the diverse peoples, cultures, and environments of the African continent with students, faculty, and members of our broader communities.”
Kasia Szremski, Associate Director of CLACS states “[T]he Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies (CLACS) offers interdisciplinary BA and MA degrees along with undergraduate and graduate minors in Latin American Studies. Students in our programs benefit from individualized advising and the opportunity to work with more than 130 affiliated faculty from across the Urbana-Champaign campus.”