About Centers and Institutes

The University of Minnesota is home to over 300 research, education, and outreach centers and institutes. This listing will help you identify, learn about, and contact these units.

Interested in partnering with a center or institute? Please contact the Office for Public Engagement.

Center and Institute staff needing to make updates to this list, please contact centers@umn.edu.

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Addiction Studies, Center for

The purpose of the Center for Addiction Studies (CAS) is to develop research opportunities in areas of addiction (including chemical abuse and problem gambling), administrate research on selected aspects of addictions and provide campus coordination for teaching and curricula on addictions.

CAS was established in 1990. Much of the early work of CAS was concerned with prevalence and treatment of problem gambling in Minnesota.

Since 2001, CAS research activity has centered on college student drinking concerns. The target of this research is Duluth, Minnesota’s three campuses: the College of St. Scholastica, Lake Superior College and the University of Minnesota Duluth (UMD).

Campus and College: Duluth
J. Clark Laundergan
+1 218 726 7593
Last updated: June 23, 2015

Adolescent Nursing, Center for

Our Center supports MS, MPH, PhD, DNP, and post-doctoral curricula in adolescent health with stipends and tuition support for students and fellows, and post-doctoral fellowships in adolescent health - including distance learning options - that integrate knowledge and skills in leadership, research and public health practice to improve our capacity for addressing the health needs of young people. Through intensive learning institutes and workshops, we provide continuing education options in adolescent health and leadership for those in practice across all health disciplines. Serving as a national hub for health professionals specializing in adolescent health, we disseminate educational resources, offer continuing education, and provide technical assistance/consultation to our maternal and child health (MCH) partners.

Campus and College: Twin Cities, School of Nursing
Linda Bearinger
+1 612 624 5157
Last updated: July 22, 2015

Advanced Research in Language Acquisition, Center for

The Center for Advanced Research on Language Acquisition (CARLA) is one of the U.S. Department of Education's Title VI National Language Resource Centers, whose role is to improve the nation's capacity to teach and learn foreign languages effectively.

Elaine Tarone
+1 612 626 8600
Last updated: August 13, 2015

Advanced Studies in Child Welfare, Center for

The Center for Advanced Studies in Child Welfare (CASCW) brings the University of Minnesota together with county, tribal, state and community social services in a partnership dedicated to improving the lives of children and families involved with public and tribal child welfare. In collaboration with the Minnesota Department Human Services and other public and tribal child welfare agencies, CASCW examines new and existing research, policy and practice to identify effective child welfare practices, inform child welfare administration, improve supervision and training of child welfare workers, and incorporate new information into the School of Social Work's curriculum. CASCW also works to advance the knowledge base within the profession by implementing the Title IV-E stipend program, offering over 40 MSW students significant financial support for their studies in child welfare.

Traci LaLiberte
+1 612 624 4231
Last updated: July 22, 2015

Advanced Study, Institute for

The Institute for Advanced Study seeks to ignite creative, innovative, and profound research and discovery in the sciences, humanities, and the arts. The Institute for Advanced Study is a concept, a site, and a community dedicated to public and intellectual exchanges across the fields of human endeavor. It pursues this vision through support for faculty fellowships and research collaboratives that bring together artists, scientists, and scholars from across and beyond the University. It provides physical spaces where artists, scientists, and scholars can engage in and share their work. This strategy encompasses not only scheduled events and presentations, but also unplanned encounters that facilitate unexpected inspiration, revelation, and collaboration. It convenes a biennial symposium that catalyzes conversations across the University of Minnesota and that highlights the most innovative research initiatives that exist in the United States and the world.

Campus and College: Twin Cities, University-Wide
Jennifer Gunn
+1 612 626 5054
Last updated: August 13, 2015

Advocacy and Education, Aurora Center for

The Aurora Center for Advocacy and Education is the on-campus resource for direct services and education related to issues of interpersonal violence. We provide crisis intervention and advocacy services to survivors of sexual assault, relationship violence, and stalking, and offer support services to people who are concerned about someone who has been victimized.

Aurora Center staff and volunteers are also available to facilitate education and training to students, faculty, and staff on the issues of violence prevention, awareness and response.

Campus and College: Twin Cities
Katie Eichele
+1 612 626 2929
Last updated: August 13, 2015

Affordance Perception-Action Laboratory

The perceptual guidance of action and the use of movement to obtain perceptual information are two central aspects of behavior. The Affordance Perception-Action Laboratory (APAL) is a leader in quantitative research on relations between perception and action. Our focus is on the integration of perception and action in the context of affordances. Affordances are relations between properties of the environment and properties of the organism that have consequences for behavior. Affordances are directly relevant to the success of our interactions with the environment. We study movements that are used to gain information about affordances. The venues for our research include laboratory studies in naturalistic situations, virtual environments, and video games, and field studies of perceptual-motor coordination on ships at sea.  APAL research straddles the boundary between basic and applied science: Our research on "basic" issues has implications for the design and use of human-machine systems, and our research on "applied" issues has implications for general theories of perception and action.

Thomas Stoffregen
+1 612 624 1025
Last updated: July 22, 2015

Aging, Center on

The Center on Aging facilitates the University's response to the many issues of the aging population by fostering basic and applied research, as well as education of students and professionals to help explicate the aging process and inform public policy.

Campus and College: Twin Cities, School of Public Health
Robert Kane
+1 612 624 118
Last updated: January 16, 2015

Agricultural Utilization Research Institute

AURI provides scientific technical assistance, technology transfer and a targeted network of resources to develop value-added uses for crops and coproducts. We provide applied research services and product development assistance to create new ag-based products and help move them to market. With unique facilities and a highly-functioning, professional staff, AURI is a one-of-a-kind resource that provides assistance to Minnesota businesses looking to create more value for the state’s agricultural products.

Campus and College: Crookston
Teresa Spaeth
Last updated: January 16, 2015

Airport Technical Assistance Program

The Airport Technical Assistance Program (AirTAP) is a statewide assistance program for aviation personnel that offers education and information resources, training programs, technical assistance, access to experts, and printed materials.   AirTAP was created by the: University's Center for Transportation Studies, and the Local Technical Assistance Program, Minnesota Department of Transportation, and Minnesota Council of Airports

Jim Grothaus
+1 612 626 1077
Last updated: August 13, 2015

Allied Health Programs, Center for

The CAHP is an emerging statewide resource to address healthcare workforce shortages through developing signature academic partnerships linking UMN allied health programs with other programs in the state. The goal is to integrate curricula, develop state-of-the-art learning platforms, and provide geographically distributed access to programs through performance sites that will provide student advisement, enhance learning, house "hands on" laboratories for skill acquisition, and serve as logistical support sites for digital technology that enhances learning.

Campus and College: Twin Cities, Academic Health Center
Barbara Brandt
+1 612 625 8936
Last updated: August 13, 2015

Ambulatory Research Center

The mission of the Ambulatory Research Center (ARC) is to increase understanding and improve the treatment of mental disorders. To this end, the ARC will conduct a broad range of research studies including those examining the biological underpinnings of mental disorders as well as studying the effectiveness of different treatments. Furthermore, the ARC will serve as a resource in the research training of physicians and other allied health professionals. In pursuit of this mission the ARC will strictly adhere to the standards of Good Clinical Practice, ensuring protection of human subjects and data integrity.

Campus and College: Twin Cities, Academic Health Center
John Grabowski
+1 612 273 9800
Last updated: May 20, 2016

American Indian and Minority Health, Center of

The Center of American Indian and Minority Health (CAIMH) at the University of Minnesota Medical School strives to raise the health status of the Native American population by educating Native American students in the field of health care and Indian health.

Campus and College: Duluth, Medical School (Duluth)
Lorentz Wittmers
+1 218 726 7235
Last updated: July 27, 2015

Animal Health and Food Safety, Center for

The Center for Animal Health and Food Safety proactively contributes to the safety and security of the global food system and significantly strengthens Minnesota's ability to anticipate and respond to emerging issues and imminent threats from animal and foodborne diseases.

Linda Valeri and Scott Wells
+1 612 625 8709
Last updated: July 27, 2015

Applied & Translational Sensory Science, Center for

The vision of CATSS is to harness the University of Minnesota's world-leading scientific expertise in sensory science to tackle the problems faced by millions of people with sensory deficits, such as low vision or hearing loss. With our aging population, sensory deficits that cut people off from their social and physical environment will have an increasingly devastating impact at both the individual and societal levels.

The Center combines the forces of scientists, clinicians, and engineers from the University of Minnesota and Mayo Clinic with the strong medical devices industry already present in the metropolitan Minneapolis area. The University of Minnesota has committed substantial funds and resources towards founding CATSS, and it officially opened in July 2015. To ensure its long-term success, CATSS will earn support from industry, government, and foundations to support its ongoing mission through applied and translational research projects that lead to tangible improvements in quality of life.

Peggy Nelson
+ 612 624 7846
Last updated: February 23, 2017

Applied Research and Educational Improvement, Center for

CAREI facilitates the connections between organizations and groups serving the needs of children and families: schools, community agencies and groups, state and federal agencies and the College of Education and Human Development.

Kyla Wahlstrom
Last updated: July 27, 2015

Austrian Studies, Center for

Established in 1977, the Center for Austrian Studies (CAS) is the Western Hemisphere's oldest and best-known multidisciplinary research center devoted to the historical and contemporary experience of Austria and Central Europe.  The Center:

  • serves as a focal point in North America for the study of Austria and Central European lands with a common Habsburg heritage across disciplines in the humanities, the social sciences, the applied sciences, and the fine arts;
  • analyzes Austrian perspectives as a powerful tool for understanding new developments in post-cold war Europe;
  • connects scholars, students, and an international community to resources in Austria, Central Europe, and Minnesota.

The Center pursues its mission through a variety of activities that promote research, education, and training in the field and by serving as an international clearinghouse for information and scholarship.

Klaas van der Sanden
+1 612 624 9811
Last updated: February 23, 2017