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Our Mission

The Alliance for the Arts in Research Universities (a2ru) fosters and champions the role of the arts and design in research universities. Underpinned by research and synthesis, our mission is connected knowledge and empowered leadership—to uphold and advance the arts and design in research, teaching, scholarship, and creative practice.

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Join an Alliance of Partners

The Alliance for the Arts in Research Universities (a2ru) is a partnership and an alliance committed to transforming research universities to ensure the greatest possible institutional support for arts-integrative research, curricula, programs and creative practice between the arts, sciences, and other disciplines. It is committed to supporting the growing body of high-quality scholarly and creative production most attainable when disciplines are free to experiment within and across their boundaries.

a2ru unifies arts-integrative efforts through:

  • Researching best practices for arts-integrative research, curricula, and creative practice in research universities
  • Providing venues for presentation, leadership and faculty networking, and dissemination of research and creative scholarship
  • Advocating for and promoting arts and design practices as fundamental forms of knowledge production applicable to all disciplines

a2ru transcends institutional barriers to arts-integrative research, curricula and practice by:

  • Conducting research to inform public conversation and influence relevant policy
  • Supporting academic leadership at partner institutions through consultation on the structural and organizational dynamics required to launch and/or sustain innovative arts-integrative efforts, sharing of best practices, and connecting institutions across its national network

 “a2ru is unique in its commitment to catalyze national efforts supporting others to realize the arts are crucial to developing new fields of research, play an essential role in our nations cultural and economic development, and foster competencies in creativity, innovation, and communication that are essential to the future of our world.”

– Dr. Barbara O. Korner, Dean of the College of Arts and Architecture at Penn State University, a2ru Executive Committee

What We Make


Connect knowledge and empower leadership with tools and know-how.

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Gain insights and perspectives on the arts and design and their formative role in building knowledge, experience, and practice.

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Join a national alliance of leaders — with practices, and partnerships for next-generation research, teaching, and scholarship.

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Find and discover examples to showcase, inspire, compare and learn from.

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