The International History Institute (IHI) at Boston University was founded in 1999 to promote the importance of history in understanding international cultural, economic, political, and military affairs. It supports interdisciplinary faculty research and teaching and promotes public conversation through open participation in its conferences, lectures, seminars, colloquia and film series.

The Institute draws most heavily upon its internal and external Faculty Fellows and Graduate Fellows in conducting lectures, seminars and roundtable colloquia. It assists Fellows and students put on panels and conferences. It also hosts occasional University lectures by senior international historians and eminent ‘witnesses to history.’

The IHI has progressively expanded its outreach to the general public through hosting broadly themed conferences, lectures and symposia on the big issues of the 20th century that continue to shape the modern world in the 21st century: the two great wars as well as efforts at peacemaking, the end of empires and problems of post-colonial failed states, the politics of the first Cold War and prospect of new cold wars, and the conflict-ridden globalization of world markets and diplomacy.