It is involved in research in social sciences and mainly focuses on research in the fields of socio-economic development, popular culture, public policies and social technologies of modernity. It provides training and guidance, as well as consultancy and research feedback to scholars, agencies, institutions and government organisations concerned with development. The Institute offers Doctoral and Post-Doctoral research work with ICSSR fellowship support for scholars. It is affiliated to the University of Allahabad for the award of doctoral fellowships.
As part of its commitment to rural development it has started an MBA –Rural Development program.Economist like Prof.Jean Drez and social scientist like Badri Narayan are the part of the faculty of the Institute.Drez is also a member of National Advisory Council,led by Smt. Sonia Gandhi.