Organizationally, KITA has seven research clusters. Each cluster is led by a prominent scholar or a highly experienced professional with an outstanding record of achievements in his or her respective field. It is his/her responsibility to plan and develop activities for the research cluster he/she is in charge of and is also expected to seek funding from within and outside the university. Due to the elevated status of UKM as a Research University, each research cluster is tasked to create an International Advisory Network respectively to advise and evaluate all their activities based on international benchmarks globally from time to time. The seven clusters are as follows:
|Social Theory and Ethnic Studies||
Critically examines the existing debates and discourses on the theoretical and conceptual endeavours within the field of ethnic studies and explore new and academically imperative research areas.
|Ethnicity and Religion||
The complex relationship between ethnicity and religion is observed and analysed, in a critical and sustained manner, for both academic and policy purposes.
|Ethnicity at Workplace||
The increased ethnic pluralization of societies worldwide due to global demand for labour and large-scale demographic displacement of peoples demands a closer analytical examination of its impact at various workplaces in a broad range of socio-economic activities.
|Ethnicity and Consumerism||
The lifestyles of millions have been transformed by globalization that, in turn, created a certain level of homogeneity which is embedded in various heterogeneous social formations (ethnic, class and religion) hence needing a critical and sustained analytical examination.
|Arts and Social Integration||
Important but often marginalized as a focus of research, the arts has indeed played a critical, if silent, role, in fostering social integration across a broad spectrum of societal forms and interests, thus it needs a macro and micro research attention.
|Ethnicity and Food||
Food is one of the most powerful cultural and identity markers, as everyone can relate to it on a daily basis. Conceptually food can be viewed as a symbolic medium of integration or differentiation in multi-ethnic Malaysia. Eating patterns need therefore to be empirically investigated in the context of social change.
|Ethnicity and Migration||
This cluster sets out to examine the relationship between ethnicity and migration; encompassing the phenomenon of super-diversity resulting from migration, as well as demographical changes, urbanization, social strata, and cultural norms and value systems – all within the context of nation-building.