About the Center

Center Summer Fellows Share their Research - April 4th at 3:30 PM

Join us for a public event featuring the Center's Summer 2016 research fellows -- USC undergraduate and graduate students and USC faculty -- who will discuss the research they have conducted using testimonies from the Visual History Archive. 


Omer Bartov Gives the Sara and Asa Shapiro Scholar Annual Lecture - May 8th at 11:30 AM

Join us for a public lecture by Omer Bartov (Brown University), 2016-2017 Sara and Asa Shapiro Scholar in Residence. He will be discussing how the East Galician town of Buczacz was transformed from a site of coexistence, where Poles, Ukrainians, and Jews had lived side-by-side for centuries, into a site of genocide.


Center's Interdisciplinary Research Week Will Focus on Holocaust Survivors in Latin America

For its Interdisciplinary Research Week, the Center has invited a team of scholars whose research will focus on testimonies of Holocaust survivors who settled in Mexico, Argentina, Chile and Colombia.


The USC Shoah Foundation Center for Advanced Genocide Research is dedicated to advancing new areas of interdisciplinary research on the Holocaust and other genocides, focusing on the origins of genocide and how to intervene in the cycle that leads to mass violence.

Its establishment as the research and scholarship unit of the USC Shoah Foundation in April 2014 signified an important milestone for genocide research internationally.

Founding Director Wolf Gruner, USC Professor of History and Shapell-Guerin Chair in Jewish Studies, is an internationally recognized expert on the Holocaust and genocide studies. He has published 10 books and numerous articles on the Holocaust in Europe as well as on mass violence against indigenous peoples in Latin America.

The Center organizes annual international workshops and conferences, hosts a speaker series on genocide and mass violence, and hosts a research fellowship program, which convenes an international community of scholars, young academics, and students.

Since the University of Southern California is the only world-renowned private research institution that houses substantial original material from the Holocaust and other genocides in its archives, the Center for Advanced Genocide Research is uniquely positioned to advance the interdisciplinary study of mass violence.

“Los Angeles is home to the largest survivor communities of several genocides – including those that occurred in Armenia, Cambodia and Guatemala,” Dr. Gruner said. “USC is a fitting locale for this intellectual hub of international and interdisciplinary scholarship on the topic of Holocaust and genocide studies.”

While the Center promotes research and scholarship on genocide in general, it focuses on the following three primary themes:

Resistance to Genocide and Mass Violence

To study conditions and factors – historically and contemporarily – that enable people, groups and societies to slow down or stop the course of mass violence. Here the Center focuses on acts of resistance that inhibit the impact of genocidal ideology and/or defy its policies.

Violence, Emotion and Behavioral Change

To explore the nature of mass violence and its emotional, social, psychological, historical, and physical impacts on individual behavior, and to deepen the understanding of the individual experience as reflected in personal testimonies of survivors, witnesses, and perpetrators. The Center advances the application of such knowledge in fostering behavior and/or behavioral change in resisting mass violence. 

Digital Genocide Studies

To examine how large digital data sets, such as the fully indexed 52,000 video testimonies of the USC Shoah Foundation’s Visual History Archive, can be used for a sophisticated quantitative analysis of complex human phenomena. The Center seeks to establish patterns of behavior in the field of mass violence and its resistance.