The Asian MetaCentre for Population and Sustainable Development Analysis was established in 2000 with funding from the Wellcome Trust, UK. The centre was constituted through a collaborative effort between the former Centre for Advanced Studies (now the Asia Research Institute [ARI]) at the National University of Singapore, the College of Population Studies (CPS) at Chulalongkorn University, Thailand and the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA), Austria. The National Centre for Epidemiology and Population Health (NCEPH) at Australian National University, joined as the principal collaborator in 2002.

The Wellcome Trust (through its Pop ulation Studies Programme) awarded an initial grant of approximately S$1.2 million in to facilitate the setting up of an Asian MetaCentre with its main “hub” located at the Asia Research Institute (formerly located at the Centre for Advanced Studies [CAS]), the aim of which was to foster strong links to the “spoke” academic centres in South and Southeast Asia. In 2002, the Asian MetaCentre received a further fund of S$2.7 million from the Trust in 2002, this time made under the auspices of the Wellcome Trust’s Health Consequences of Population Change (HCPC) Programme which incorporated the former Population Studies Programme. The 65 million pound five-year HCPC Programme is a research funding programme supporting research into the health impacts of shifts in population structure and behaviour patterns in the developing world.

In 2015, Asian demographic Research Institute (ADRI) has also reached a collaborative agreement with the Principal Investigators of the Asian MetaCentre for Population and Sustainable Development and will function as the new headquarters of the MetaCentre (see www.populationasia.com ).