The IHE sponsors programs that illuminate specific issues with the wisdom of Catholic Social Doctrine and form rising scholars to promote human flourishing in diverse professional fields.

  • Hi emmerson
  • Renee Rasmussen
    “My favorite part of the IHE is the way it strives to uphold and share truth without polarizing anyone in the process. The community around the IHE is focused on learning and pursuing knowledge in hopes of creating change in the modern world and on Catholic University's campus. It truly is a unique and wonderful Institute."
    Renee Rasmussen
    English major and theology minor
  • Tony Crnkovich
    “As an Undergraduate Fellow, I have had the unique opportunity of both helping the IHE carry out its mission of bringing truth to the wider culture and reaping the benefits of its work. Regarding the latter, it is no coincidence that the two classes I enjoyed the most this past semester were taught by IHE Fellows. I would definitely consider the many conversations with IHE staff and Fellows as one of the highlights of my years here at Catholic University."
    Tony Crnkovich
    Philosophy major
  • Pope Saint John Paul II
    “Apart from the family, other intermediate communities exercise primary functions and give life to specific networks of solidarity. These develop as real communities of persons and strengthen the social fabric, preventing society from becoming an anonymous and impersonal mass, as unfortunately often happens today. It is in interrelationships on many levels that a person lives, and that society becomes more `personalized.’”
    Pope Saint John Paul II
    Centesimus Annus, 49 (15 May 1991)
  • Alexander Hamilton
    “The fabric of American Empire ought to rest on the solid basis of the consent of the people. The streams of national power ought to flow immediately from that pure original fountain of all legitimate authority.”
    Alexander Hamilton
    Federalist, No. 22
  • Pope Pius XI
    “Just as it is gravely wrong to take from individuals what they can accomplish by their own initiative and industry and give it to the community, so also it is an injustice and at the same time a grave evil and disturbance of right order to assign to a greater and higher association what lesser and subordinate organizations can do. For every social activity ought of its very nature to furnish help to the members of the body social, and never destroy and absorb them.”
    Pope Pius XI
    Quadragesimo Anno, 79 (15 May 1931)
  • Thomas Farr
    “This program stands at the very core of Catholic University's mission to teach its students the deep meaning and profound value of human rights grounded in the dignity of the human person. At the center of all human rights is its linchpin—without which the others cannot properly defend true human dignity—religious freedom. No one is better qualified to teach its role in all fundamental rights than the director of the Human Rights Program, William Saunders.”
    Thomas Farr
    Religious Freedom Institute President and Advisor to the M.A. in Human Rights at Catholic University.
  • Steven Howard
    "The M.A. in Human Rights enriched my understanding of human rights by illuminating their Christian origins.  As I deepened my study of Catholic Social Doctrine, I developed a new appreciation for the moral clarity it provides for the challenging issues of our day.  Experiencing the community of Catholic University was also incredibly rewarding for me as a Catholic.  Moving forward, I feel more solidly grounded in Catholic Social Doctrine and prepared to tackle human rights challenges.”
    Steven Howard
    M.A. in Human Rights
  • Chen Guangcheng
    “I believe that what determines outcomes is people. As long as you have confidence and determination and know that justice is on your side, and the thirst for freedom, you will find the path to overcome your enemies. The quest for freedom is innate within all of us.”
    Chen Guangcheng
    Distinguished Fellow at The Catholic University of America.
  • Robert P. George
    “I think part of the project for those of us who do believe in human rights, seriously believe in human rights, who believe in them not because they're popular but because we think they're true, part of the challenge for us and our job is to be more effective in making the case. I don't mean just moral, just rhetorically effective. I mean to make the case better, make the stronger case, the strongest possible case for a meta-ethical view that would provide a solid ground for belief in human rights.”
    Robert P. George
    McCormick Professorship of Jurisprudence at Princeton University and Advisor to the M.A. in Human Rights at The Catholic University of America
  • Marie-Sophie Brackstone
    “My interest and involvement with the IHE has allowed me to start to explore and engage with the Christian faith in the public sphere.”
    Marie-Sophie Brackstone
    Music & Philosophy Double Major
  • Javier Mazariegos
    “I am dearly thankful for all the IHE has done to make our college life a noble endeavor.”
    Javier Mazariegos
    English & Philosophy Double Major
  • Rita Rogers
    “The opportunity to participate in vibrant and edifying discussions on topics of philosophy and literature has been a joy for me as a STEM major. I am very grateful for the insightful professors and peers who share the same pursuit of Truth and have inspired both my intellectual and spiritual growth.”
    Rita Rogers
    Nursing Major

Follow us

“This Institute, I think, is a very important expression of the renaissance that’s underway at Catholic University in these recent years, and I’m delighted to be part of that.”

George Weigel
About the IHE

The Institute for Human Ecology (IHE) at The Catholic University of America is the nation’s leading academic institute committed to increasing scientific understanding of the economic, cultural, and social conditions vital for human flourishing.

Contact Us

The Institute for Human Ecology

The Catholic University of America

620 Michigan Avenue, NE

339 Caldwell Hall

Washington, DC 20064


The Institute for Human Ecology
The Catholic University of America

620 Michigan Avenue, NE
339 Caldwell Hall
Washington, DC 20064