Founded in 1987, by Professor John Kirton, the Research Group consists of a global network of scholars, professionals in the media, business, government and research communities, and students interested in the ongoing activity of the G7 and G8, and closely related bodies such as the G20. It is managed from the University of Toronto and assisted by a Professional Advisory Council of eminent experts on the G7/8 and Special Advisors with expertise in specific areas. Within the university, its work is supported by the International Relations Program based at Trinity College, the Munk School of Global Affairs, Robarts Library, Trinity College’s John Graham Library, the Department of Political Science, and other units.

During the year, the G8 Research Group conducts programs related to research, teaching, and public education. At the time of the annual G8 Summit, the G8 Research Group mounts programs at the summit and in the host country related to documentation, media assistance, analysis, an academic symposium, a public policy conference, lectures, seminars, courses and related activities.

Before and during the summits, the G8 Information Centre also assembles, verifies and posts documents on the meetings, the available official documentation of all past summits and ministerial meetings (in all G8 languages), scholarly writings and policy analyses, research studies, scholarship information and links to related sites.