In February 1955, Academia Sinica established a preparatory committee for founding the Institute of Modern History and invited Kuo Ting-yee (1904-1975) to serve as its chair. The initial stages of the committee’s work focused on the collection of archival materials, purchase of Chinese and Western books, recruitment and training of research personnel, formulating a research plan and procedures, etc. The Institute was formally established in April 1965.
Research conducted at the Institute encompasses transformations in modern Chinese politics, military affairs, foreign policy, society, economics, culture, thought, religion, and other fields, while paying special attention to formations of modernity. Our research fellows not only maintain solid traditions of historical scholarship, but also share deep concern for contemporary society and world affairs.
In order to effectively promote research on the important issues mentioned above, the Institute's researchers have taken the initiative to organize eight research groups that are distinct but also interact closely with each other: 1) Women and Gender History; 2) History of Knowledge; 3) Hu Shih; 4) Chinese Urban History; 5) Chiang Kai-shek; 6) East Asia Regional Studies; 7) Western Learning and China; 8) State and Society. These research groups help bring together colleagues with similar interests inside and outside of the Institute to jointly collect data for undertaking long-term and in-depth research on key topics in modern history, thereby highlighting major breakthroughs in the Institute’s scholarship and earning the respect of the international scholarly community