The IGA aims to build a vibrant intellectual environment for original, rigorous and significant thinking and broader impact in London, but also to form an alliance of centres of excellence in research and policy thinking in emerging economies. By employing multidisciplinary approaches and encouraging evidence-based policy making, it also aspires to promote deeper understanding and peer-to-peer transfer of knowledge across emerging and developing economies. The IGA wants to offer a 'safe space' that is open, fair and transparent and where students, government, private sector and civil society from all around the world can meet to address the challenges of the 21st century.
IGA engages ten LSE departments and currently has eight constituent centres which includes six regional centres at different stages of development, LSE IDEAS, the second-ranked university-based think tank in the world, and the Centre for Women, Peace and Security recently established through a grant from the UK government.
In addition, a research-based 'do tank' focusing on connecting research and policy action and specifically research on implementation is being developed in collaboration with the Institute for New Economic Thinking head-quartered in New York.
Unlike some of its leading competitors the IGA is keen not to build up a faculty separate from that of the participating departments. Rather, the IGA wants to use the strength of LSE’s departments to guarantee quality and attract first-rate faculty.
The regional centres are platforms through which LSE can mobilize its expertise across disciplines in certain geographic areas. While the individual centres must have their own agendas and priorities depending on the challenges in the individual regions, the IGA facilitates and encourages them, as well as the wider LSE community of faculty and students, to engage on common research themes and in a number of research-based policy initiatives, including Global Climate, Global Finance, Global Health, and Global Migration. Centres are cultivating existing, and developing new, links to local research and policy institutions thus enhancing the understanding of the local and regional contexts to the global challenges.
The inaugural Director of the IGA is Professor Erik Berglof.