IPS achieves its objectives through a wide range of activities including seminars, symposia, conferences and roundtables on multi-dimensional topics, and their outcomes i.e. reports, periodicals and publications, Interaction, dialogue , thematic research and capacity-building programs are instrumental in its research endeavors. IPS formulates viable plans and presents key initiatives and policy measures to policy makers, analysts, political leaders, legislators, researchers, academia, civil society organization, media and other stakeholders. It believes in good governance, transparency, professionalism, and program effectiveness, and strictly upholds its independence, credibility and integrity. It operates as a self-financed think-tank counting on endowments, sponsorships, voluntary services and private donations. Apart from its periodicals, publications and membership fees it generates revenues by providing consultancy services.
IPS has defined Pakistan Affairs, International Relations and Faith and Society as its major areas of research and has developed an effective system of coordination of research activities by local and foreign scholars through a dedicated team of research coordinators. Through this scheme of work IPS is not only able to conduct in-house research on areas of interest but also coordinates research activities by IPS associates working at their respective places. Its academic programs are designed and run under the supervision of National Academic Council (NAC), which plays a pivotal role in functioning of IPS by providing policy guidelines, reviewing its plans and setting its priorities. IPS garners collaboration as well as extends its active cooperation to other organizations in one or more areas of research. Such coordination could be time- specific or discipline-based for conducting joint research, cosponsoring of seminars and exchange of library and other facilities. IPS currently reciprocates with a number of national and international institutions and is engaged in scholars’ exchange arrangements with various research institutions within Pakistan and abroad.