Censis was founded as a social study and research institute in 1964, becoming a legally recognised Foundation in 1973 through Presidential Decree. It is located in Rome, and the staff is composed approximately by 30 researchers and 15 research assistants.
During the past 50 years it has carried out studies, provided consultancy, developed models and submitted proposals in the area of socio- economic processes and policies, more than 1.000 projects, most of which conducted on behalf of Italian and foreign institutional organisations. It has gained the reputation of being one of the most prestigious national research institutes in social sciences and economics.
The Censis approach can be traced back to the 1950's, when economic growth required Italy to identify new methods of social research and social investment. In later decades, Censis employed its analytic skills and affirmed its presence in a series of vital areas and issues, often recognizing general trends before other observers: