In 2018 the Gotha Research Centre established a research department dedicated to the historical study of the Illuminati Order, which existed from 1776/78 to 1787/88. The most important goal is to make the written legacies of the Order and its members accessible to the public in such a way that they are also available to other researchers and anyone interested in the history of the Order for their own research interests and projects. In addition to academic publications and events, the researchers who have joined forces in the research department focus primarily on communicating their own academic findings and research results as well as making the most important historical sources accessible by using an online platform that functions as both an information portal and a virtual research environment: the "Gotha Illuminati Research Base" .
At the same time, the historical research on the Illuminati Order, which has attracted much interest in the historical sciences since its "rediscovery" by Richard van Dülmen in the 1970s, has so far been conducted mainly by individual researchers, and is now to be transferred into a long-term and sustainable research structure. The Gotha Research Centre seems to be a particularly suitable place for this: nowhere else has research on the Illuminati Order been so intensive in recent years as in Gotha.