About Us

Nanovic Institute by Gate

The mission of the Nanovic Institute for European Studies is to enrich the intellectual culture of Notre Dame by creating an integrated, interdisciplinary home for students and faculty to explore the evolving ideas, cultures, beliefs, and institutions that shape Europe today. Consequently, the Institute is heavily involved at Notre Dame in five areas:

  1. Promoting European studies
  2. Transforming undergraduates
  3. Professionalizing graduate students
  4. Fostering interdisciplinary faculty research
  5. Building an international network

The Institute is administered by a Directorstaff, a faculty committee, and an Advisory Board. Over 150 faculty from across campus affiliate with the Institute, along with a growing list of visiting European scholars. The Institute collaborates frequently with other centers, institutes, programs, schools, and European universities. It routinely sponsors over one hundred undergraduate and graduate-level students annually in research and European projects. Friends of the Institute can be found in every corner of Europe.

“The idea of a program that could grow, evolve, and have an impact on the lives of students appealed to me.” - Bob Nanovic

The idea of establishing the Institute had its origins on the Danube River in the early 1990s. Robert and Elizabeth Nanovic were participants in a Notre Dame-sponsored tour of central and eastern Europe, complemented by daily lectures with Robert Wegs, a history professor at Notre Dame. “We had been thinking for some time about what we could do for Notre Dame,” Bob Nanovic remembers, “The idea of a program that could grow, evolve, and have an impact on the lives of students appealed to me.”

The Brownson Courtyard Gate by the Nanovic Institute

Thus the Institute was created in 1992, first as a “center” for European studies which sponsored an annual conference and ran a Minor in European Studies. Over time, its programs expanded. In 1997, it was designated an institute. In 2002, the current director, A. James McAdams, oversaw the development of the institute’s first formal strategic plan. The goal of this plan was to use the institute’s resources to provide greater intellectual coherence to the educational experience of undergraduate and graduate students, integrate faculty research, and enhance the internal and external visibility of European studies at Notre Dame.

The generosity of Notre Dame’s alumni and friends enables us to meet this goal. If you would like to help, contact A. James McAdams, Director at 574.631.5253 or by email at amcadams@nd.edu.
View the current list of gifts