University of Brasília (UnB)







04 - Quality Education

Organization Type

Academia / Think Tank




1- The University: The University of Brasilia offers free public education of excellence for Brazilian and foreign students, with a humanistic, embracive and plural perspective of citizens' rights. Our goals and our mission are to be a reference in teaching, research and community projects, contributing to global knowledge in an interconnected world.

  • The University of Brasilia was created in 1962 following the joint vision of the anthropologist Darcy Ribeiro and the educator Anísio Teixeira.

  • Its conception came from the same revolutionary spirit that gave rise to the federal capital, Brasília: to renew the methods of learning and to teach towards the future.

  • Dedicated to the promotion of free, inclusive and high-quality education, UnB is among the best universities in Brazil.

  • Its institutional mission is to produce, integrate and disseminate knowledge, and to educate citizens to be committed to ethics, social responsibility and sustainable development.

  • In 1995, the university was the first in the country to offer a three-stage entrance exam (Serial Evaluation Program – PAS), with tests for candidates at the end of each year of high school.

  • In 2003, UnB was the first Brazilian federal university to approve affirmative action for black and indigenous applicants.

2- The Institute of International Relations (IREL)

Studies in the field of International Relations and Brazilian Foreign Policy are an integral part of the academic traditions of the University of Brasília. The first Bachelor's Degree in International Relations in the Country was created at UnB in 1974. Being the Federal Capital made Brasília a favorable environment for the development of this field of study by bringing together, in addition to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and diplomatic representations, all the organs of the federal public administration and the legislative and judicial branches. In fact, the Bachelor's Degree in International Relations, especially in its early years, had an expressive collaboration from Itamaraty (Brazilian Ministry of Foreign Affairs). At the time, there were few academics who dedicated themselves to the systematic study of International Relations and Brazilian Foreign Policy and, thus, the participation of diplomats in the teaching staff of UnB was a factor of great importance for the consolidation of this field of study at the University of Brasília .

Between 1976 and 1984, as part of the work to consolidate the area, UnB promoted, with certain regularity, important national and international events, bringing together some of the most renowned social scientists and specialists in International Relations from countries with great tradition in teaching and research in the area. Among those participating were UnB Karl Deutsch, Raymond Aron, Henry Kissinger, Ernest Gellner, F. A. Hayek, Leszek Kolakowski, Maurice Duverger, Robert Dahl, Giovanni Sartori, and Norberto Bobbio. The events also included Brazilian thought leaders who had produced important reflections for the formation of the base of International Relations studies such as Afonso Arinos de Melo Franco, Hélio Jaguaribe and Celso Lafer. The contributions presented by most of the speakers, were transformed into books, published by Editora UnB, which also instituted the Political Thinking Collection, whose first volume was by Karl Deutsch entitled “Analysis of International Relations” (1982). At the time, another initiative aimed at consolidating the area at UnB was the creation of the International Relations magazine, which published original works and articles by Brazilian authors together with translations of articles by foreign authors considered of great relevance to stimulate reflection on International Relations.

Currently, IREL maintains a Bachelor's Degree in International Relations, a Master's Course and a Doctorate Course. It should be noted that IREL has been offering a Specialization Course in International Relations (Lato Sensu Postgraduate Course) for a number of years, mainly aimed at meeting the deman for knowledge and updating by professionals who feel the need to familiarize themselves with the theme of International Relations. Over more than three decades, UnB has trained more than two thousand bachelors, specialists, masters and, now, doctors in International Relations.

Institutionally, throughout much of its history, the International Relations area of ​​the University of Brasília was organized into two distinct units: one, located in the Department of Political Science and International Relations, and the other located in the History Department. In 2000, the capacities were brought together to form the current Institute of International Relations (IREL), a process that was completed in 2003. To a large extent, the institutional construction process of IREL mirrors the organization of the research programs that define the academic activities of the Institute based on two basic aspects: History of International Relations and International and Comparative Politics.


Produce, integrate and disseminate knowledge, forming citizens committed to ethics, social responsibility and sustainable development.

Values ​:

  • Ethics and respect for diversity. Institutional autonomy with transparency and social responsibility.

  • Permanent search for excellence. Universal access.

  • Respect for dignity, intellectual freedom and differences.

  • Preservation and appreciation of life.

  • International Relations at UnB

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