CRRID's activities are diverse, ever growing and can be placed in the context of its professed aims and objectives. CRRID plays an active role in promoting social science research in India, which matches the accepted standards of social investigation and meets the emerging challenges facing the country from a variety of perspectives. Inter-disciplinary research is at the core of its activities, which have an emphatic policy orientation besides empirical grounding and theoretical base. In this backdrop, short as well as long-term projects sponsored by the Government of India, State Governments, International Agencies and others are undertaken at CRRID.

In recent times, on advice of the funding agencies, policy makers and government CRRID has diversified its research programmes and brought interventional studies into its fold. The research profile of CRRID also reflects, individual concern and specialization of the faculty as well as contemporary challenges of the society in general and of the northwest-region in particular. The geographical coverage that immediately interest CRRID are Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir, Punjab, Uttarranchal, western Uttar Pradesh and UT of Chandigarh. CRRID's has an open approach towards research collaboration and networking and currently has a number of collaborative ventures in terms of funding of research projects, data collection and sharing, joint publications, organization of seminars and workshops, etc., In addition, to regular networking with sister ICSSR supported Centres all over the country, CRRID has active strong academic links with Universities in the region for Doctoral (Ph.D) and other programmes.

CRRID faculty also works as advisors and consultants to specific projects in the region and outside depending on their respective expertise and interests. CRRID is undertaking training programmes in a host of socially and locally desired areas to add to capacity building and there is a satisfying interface between research and training at the Centre. Enriching public policy discourse is also prominent in CRRID's activities, and the Centre is fast emerging as a think-tank at local and national level with active participation of academics, jurists, industry, jurists, media, bureaucracy, social workers and political leadership. Towards this end CRRID regularly organises national and international lectures, workshops, seminars and conferences in Chandigarh.

Special lectures and discussions are regular features in CRRID's attempt to broad base research and knowledge, which are widely attended by local, national and international guests. In Chandigarh, CRRID is widely acknowledged and referred to as an intellectual hub of non-traditional nature. In past CRRID has received guests who have shown avid interest in its programmes. Apart from a few distinguished national and international visitors, which include President, Vice President, Union Ministers, Chief Ministers and State level Ministers; prominent, Administrators, Artists, Diplomats, Journalists, Planners, Scientists, Social Scientists and Writers have honoured CRRID by visiting and partaking in the activities at CRRID. Local research scholars and those from outside, including foreign academic institutions, working on the region frequent CRRID for further benefits from the faculty, programmes and library.

Interactions at CRRID are usually open to public men and women from all walks of life and are viewed as extremely rewarding. For ensuring larger public benefits, dissemination of research output is perceived to be very vital in CRRID. Towards this end, the local and national media are actively associated in the activities at CRRID. Also, CRRID has its own publications department, which besides publishing the books, reports and monographs on completed research studies along with conference proceedings, also brings out the quarterly journal the `Man and Development'. The journal has set itself the ambitious task of critically examining and analysing the entire complex processes of political, social, economic and cultural transformation in India and beyond.