Skip to main content

Interdisciplinary Center for Innovative Theory and Empirics (INCITE)


The Interdisciplinary Center for Innovative Theory and Empirics cultivates public intelligence concerning socially and culturally vital ideas that can be advanced by research, education, and conversation.

INCITE organizes its activities around foci that are socially and culturally important and that can be advanced by bringing together multi-disciplinary knowledge and practice. By socially and culturally important foci, we refer to the intersection of social structure and individual narrative, their mutual construction, and the dynamics by which they emerge. Our approach is purposefully interdisciplinary, but we do not disavow disciplinary differences. Rather, we build on them to preserve the power of the qualities of disciplines while integrating the strengths each offers. We imagine the work of the Center to be articulating ideas in ways that are jointly relevant to germane disciplines, bringing together appropriate methods and knowledge from these disciplines to advance our knowledge about these ideas, and putting this knowledge into the world to advance public intelligence through diverse kinds of collective conversations.

The ideas we pursue, the issues we consider, and the approaches we use will change over time, and specific projects and activities will change accordingly. Currently, we support research programs in risk, globalization, and the intersection of neural and social networks. These interdisciplinary collaborative projects are designed to advance public intelligence around central priorities of the University and our society. Our own research activities at this time focus on status, difference, innovation, creativity, and temporality. Each project is more fully described on the pages linked to each foci. And to advance these foci through interdisciplinary training and education, we operate programs for MAs, advanced Ph.D. students, and post-doctoral fellows.

In all of these programs, our goal is to create new ways of generating important knowledge by building and deepening new seams at the intersections of disciplines. Each of these activities occurs by joining together the ideas, thinking and/or methods of the diverse disciplines across the humanities, social sciences and life and behavioral sciences.