The Seminar of Anthropology was founded in 1963 and is situated in a Gothic building under national heritage. The seminar is located in front of the Museum der Kulturen, with which the seminar is in close collaboration and shares a library.

On 26 April 2013 the Institute of Social Anthropology celebrated its 50th anniversary.
As part of the festival program, PhD students organized an event in the afternoon to promote the exchange and networking between employed anthropologists and (PhD) students.
In the evening the institute organized a ceremony with aperitif for the general public. Livia Kern and Mara Wirthlin, then students at the institute, accompanied the anniversary event and wrote a report.