Research institutes and centres

Collaboration for research excellence

Groups having discussions at tables

Our institutes and centres are a meeting place for ideas. A focus for our world-leading academics to share their expertise, to break through disciplinary boundaries and provoke new debates.


Research institutes

We have a global reputation in human rights, social scientific research and data analytics. Our flagship institutes bring together academics from across disciplines and departments to deliver research which offers significant practical insights and impact. They engage with a wide range of external partners at a national and international level from NGOs and national governments through to the European Union and United Nations.

Human Rights Centre

We are home to one of the oldest academic human rights centres in the world. The Human Rights Centre enjoys a global reputation as a leader in the field of human rights research, practice, and education.

Professor Lorna McGregor
"At Essex, we’re working hard to be part of bringing about change, at an international, national and local level." 
Professor Lorna McGregor Director of the Human Rights Centre

Institute for Analytics and Data Science

We conduct research into issues and challenges in data exploration and big data from a multitude of perspectives. Our Institute for Analytics and Data Science (IADS) drives breakthroughs and innovation in a range of areas, including technologies for management and transfer of big data; methodological and analytical methods for different types of applications from financial and business to biomedical; and socio-economic aspects of data; and ethical, legal and human rights aspects of data.

Professor Maria Fasli
"Data underpins almost every aspect of human life and there is huge potential for unlocking its benefits."
Professor Maria Fasli Director of the Institute for Analytics and Data Science

Institute for Social and Economic Research

The Institute for Social and Economic Research (ISER) is funded and commissioned to undertake innovative and influential social and economic research, which looks at how people’s lives are changing over time.

Professor Emily Grundy
"ISER has been at the forefront of both leading data collection and data analysis and interpretation for many years and has served as a model for many international institutes."
Professor Emily Grundy Director of the Institute for Social and Economic Research

Research centres

Our research centres cover a wide range of topics and provide hubs for our academics in these fields. Some of our centres represent a single area within a department, while others are interdisciplinary with members from various departments coming together to focus on an issue.