Institute of Ethnography

The SASA Institute of Ethnography was founded in 1947. It is now the most eminent institution in Serbia researching culture in its broadest (ethnological and anthropological) sense, that is, researching the cultural heritage, identity and everyday life of the populations of the Republic of Serbia, as well as of the Serbs outside their home country.

When the SASA Institute of Ethnography was founded, its primary goal was to continue the work on Srpski etnografski zbornik (Serbian Ethnographic Journal, SEZb), a capital series of volumes that the Academy of Science had been publishing since 1894. At first the operations of the Institute were harmonized with the structure of the SEZb and research was strongly influenced by the methods of the anthropogeographic school of Jovan Cvijić, which meticulously studied folklore. In the course of time, the work of the Institute developed and changed, abandoning anthropogeographic and folkloristic issues and turning to more strictly ethnographic and anthropological ones. Initially, research concentrated on cultural change in rural areas due to modernization and urbanization and on the culture of ethnic minorities in Serbia. Since the 1970s, the influence of modern ethnological, cultural-anthropological and socio-anthropological theories has increasingly been evident. It was at that time that more substantial research into ethnicity and identity began, focusing on expatriates. Research of migrations, identity, religiosity, cultural heritage, contemporary rural and urban cultures, and other ethnological and anthropological issues started being conducted from a new angle.

Between 2011 and 2016, the SASA Institute of Ethnography implemented the following projects:

  • Cultural Heritage and Identity;
  • Multiethnicity, Multiculturalism, Migrations – Contemporary Processes;
  • Strategies of Identity: Modern Culture and Religiosity; and
  • Interdisciplinary Research of the Cultural and Linguistic Heritage of Serbia and the Development of the Multimedia Internet Portal, Pojmovnik srpske kulture (Glossary of Serbian Culture).

Since its small beginnings, when, apart from external associates, it employed only four full-time researchers, the SASA Institute of Ethnography has now grown into an institution with 30 researchers (22 of them holding PhD degrees) and one fellow.

The Institute’s most important serial publication is Glasnik (Bulletin), which has been coming out since 1952. Along with it, the SASA Institute of Ethnography also publishes the Serbian Ethnographic Journal, Special Editions, and other scholarly publications.

Over the years, the SASA Institute of Ethnography has developed successful cooperation with other cultural and scholarly institutions in Serbia and abroad and organized numerous scholarly gatherings. The Institute’s Scholarly Council was established in 2010.

The SASA Institute of Ethnography also has a Library and Documentation Center. In addition to its basic holdings, which contain monographs and periodicals, as well as audiovisual material, its special holdings comprise a valuable collection of old and rare books, collections of geographical maps, ethnographic drawings and watercolors, folk songs, and miscellaneous manuscripts, primarily containing data recorded over the course of many years by researchers during their fieldwork.


Address: Knez Mihailova 36/I, 11000 Belgrade, Serbia
Telephone: +381 11 2636-987, 2636-804
Fax: +381 11 2638-011