The Kosmopolis Institute was founded by the UvH in collaboration with the Humanistisch Instituut voor Ontwikkelingssamenwerking (Hivos) (Humanist Institute for Development Cooperation). The Kosmopolis Institute addresses issues pertaining to world citizenship and global ethics by means of interdisciplinary research, education, training and advisory activities.
In 2007 the Institute and Hivos initiated the knowledge programme Promoting Pluralism. In this programme, academics and professionals working in the field from India, Indonesia and Uganda worked together on attaining in-depth knowledge about pluralism and development. The Kosmopolis Institute organises an annual international summer school on development cooperation and human rights in collaboration with the Centre for the Study of Culture and Society (CSCS) in Bangalore, India. Participants include UvH masters students and staff members of Hivos partner organisations from various different countries.