Research and Knowledge Exchange

Research centres highlights

The College is home to over 70 research centres and institutes.

In the College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, many research centres/institutes have been crucial catalysts in developing new collaborations within and across Schools. This has resulted in significant research income and increases in numbers of staff and students in our research community. They have been especially helpful in facilitating interdisciplinary work which has attracted important research council support and also as focal points for philanthropic donations.

Some centres have attracted significant external funding from the UK research councils and other sources.


CAHSS Guide for setting up a research centre, reporting and reviewing (EASE login required)

This section highlights the work of some of the Research Centres and Institutes within the College.


Centre of African Studies

Centre for African Studies
Staff from the Centre of African Studies

The University of Edinburgh has important and long historical connections with Africa. The Centre was founded in 1962 as one of the original African Studies Centres in the UK established by the Hayter Commission and today is of the world’s leading hubs for the study of the African continent. The Centre of African Studies acts as a focal point for postgraduate teaching and supervision on Africa and a hub for research programmes that span all three of the University’s colleges. Our range of postgraduate degrees has expanded recently and we offer both on-campus and e-learning programmes. The Centre regularly appears at the top of Good University Guides, hosts a vibrant, cutting edge research community and delivers a range of high quality masters and doctoral programmes. Our students prepare for careers in academia and beyond: two former students featured in a recent ‘top 50 influential Scots’ newspaper feature, and many other of our graduates have pursued successful academic, non-profit and government careers.  Our researchers are internationally recognised. We currently host over a dozen research projects, including several large, international collaborative projects, and engage in multidisciplinary research that seeks to shed new light on Africa’s past, its politics, its development and its future. We act as a cultural hub for Africa in Scotland and in the UK. We support the highly successful Africa in Motion annual film festival, the Edinburgh International Book Festival, we have close working relationships with the Scottish Parliament and Government and with local and African NGOs, we engage with African communities in Scotland and we seek to forge closer relationships between Scotland, the UK, Europe and Africa. The Centre in June 2019 will host in Edinburgh the European Conferences on African Studies (crf. 1,500 participants).

Visit the Centre of African Studies website to learn more

The Princess Dashkova Russian Centre

Dashkova Centre
Edinburgh Makar Christine de Luca reads her translation of a Russian poem by Marina Boroditskaya at the Sonnets Exchange event hosted by the Princess Dashkova Russian Centre in collaboration with the British Council Scotland.

Founded in 2010, the Princess Dashkova Russian Centre advances knowledge in the field of Russian language studies and fosters a broader understanding of Russia through

research, academic training and knowledge exchange. Named after Princess Ekaterina Dashkova, the first woman Director of Russian Academy of Science who lived in Edinburgh from 1776 to 1782, the Centre builds on  250 years history of academic contacts and exchange of ideas between Scotland and Russia.  

The Dashkova Centre provides a hub for intellectual exchange and debate by hosting international research fellows and organising open research seminars, conferences, workshops and lectures, including the prominent Honorary Dashkova lecture and Honorary John Erickson Lecture hosted by the Principal. In order to foster interdisciplinary work in the broader field of Russian Studies the Centre has incorporated a Russian Cross-Disciplinary Research Group spanning seven University Schools.

In addition, the Dashkova Centre serves as a platform for showcasing Russian culture in Scotland and cultural diplomacy, successfully outreaching to experts and the wider community. Among the most popular cultural events hosted by the Centre are ‘The Russian Word in Scotland’ series of events with Russian writers and Russian Film Festivals. The Centre enjoys numerous academic and cultural collaborations with partners in the UK and across the world.

Visit the Princess Dashkova Russian Centre website to learn more.



Find out about previously highlighted research centres