To be “globally competitive” in the 21st century requires global understanding — that is to say a thorough understanding of developments around the world, and of the way local experiences are impacted by broader global patterns.

A critical mass of faculty researchers at Kent State University are engaged in research focused on such understanding both within and across disciplinary boundaries.

The goal of the university’s Global Understanding Research Initiative is to foster new interdisciplinary collaborations, with a particular focus on research that spans not only disciplinary boundaries but geographic boundaries as well.

Representative existing programs/ areas of research strength that reside within the scope of the Global Understanding initiative include intergroup relations; social, national, and cultural identities; intercultural communication and relations; conflict mitigation; global development and sustainability; the role of and controls on the media in a global information society; group marginalization; and issues related to refugee crises and mass movements of people.

The GURI will bring together faculty in the arts, sciences, humanities and communication who are conducting research in global contexts – including transnational, intergroup and intercultural contexts – to collaborate on projects that transcend disciplinary and geographic boundaries.

Such research is necessary in an era marked by globalization, the ubiquity of communication technologies connecting diverse populations, and the growing movement of people across national borders. The global understanding initiative will seek to stimulate interdisciplinary collaborations focused on solutions to problems of global concern.

Dr. Paul Haridakis &
Dr. Françoise Messardier-Kenney,