UCL's Institute of Advanced Studies was founded in 2015. It is based at the heart of UCL's Bloomsbury Campus in the Wilkins Building South Wing. The IAS is a research-based community of scholars comprising colleagues and doctoral students from across UCL as well as visiting fellows and research collaborators/interlocutors from the UK and internationally.
The IAS is committed to critical thinking and engaged enquiry both within and across conventional disciplinary and institutional boundaries, and aims to provide a creative and generative context in which to question and dislodge habitual practices and modes of thought. In particular, in the context of a major multi-disciplinary university, the IAS harnesses UCL's extensive expertise across the humanities and social sciences, to investigate received wisdom, to bring the aesthetic and the political into dialogue with one another, to foster collaborative cutting-edge research, to identify and address the urgent ethical and intellectual challenges that face us today, and to confront our responsibilities as citizens of an increasingly contracting and inter-connected world, exploring our place (historically as well as spatially) within it.
The IAS fosters and develops a range of themes and research priorities. It provides a home to the collective 'area studies' research groupings. It also houses a number of specialist research centres.
The IAS runs a plethora of events throughout the year, as well as producing regular publications and occasional podcasts.
The The Orwell Foundation is based at the Institute of Advanced Studies. The UNESCO-registered Orwell Archive is also held at UCL.The Orwell Lecture is held each autumn at UCL, while UCL English appoint a judge to the panel of the Orwell Prize for Political Fiction.