The main trends of scientific activity of the Institute are the fundamental and applied researches in the sphere of archaeology. The elaboration and implementation of the plans of the main trends in the fundamental scientific researches, the studying of regularities of the historical process on the territory of Kazakhstan on the basis of the complex studying of the archaeological cultures and monuments from the epoch of paleolith to the middle ages. A special place in the scientific activity of the institute is occupied by the registration, preservation and use of the monuments of historical-cultural heritage; the implementation of scientific expertises in accordance with the profile of activity of the Institute.
The scientific trends:
· the studying of anthropogenesis, the origin of man and the early stages of culture in Kazakhstan;
· the studying of the culture of the nomads beginning from the formation of the nomad way of life up to its development in dynamics, till the epoch of the Kazakh khanate;
· the studying of the interaction between the settled civilizations and nomad cultures in ancient and medieval times, in particular the solution of the issue about the beginning stage of the proto-town civilization of Kazakhstan in the contact zones of settled and nomadic way of life and habitation of the nomads;
· the issues of urbanization of medieval towns, the studying of the city structure, construction and architecture, the functions of the city as seen from the point of view of the crafts, trade and money circulation, agriculture, ideology, demography, social relations, technological progress;
· the studying of the monuments of archaeology, ancient art and architecture;
· the problems in the studying , registration, preservation and use of the monuments of historical-cultural heritage;
· the publication of scientific works, periodical and serial editions;
The collective organ of administration of the Institute is the Scientific council. There at the Scientific council are discussed and solved all the important issues pertaining to the scientific activity of the Institute.Besides the issues connected with the scientific activity there at the enlarged sessions of the Scientific council of the Institute are discussed and delivered to the collective the most significant state decisions and documents, the Addresses of the President of the country to the people of Kazakhstan, the draft projects of laws pertaining to the sphere of science, protection and use of the historical-cultural heritage. The members of the Scientific council are the leading scientific workers and also the young cadres of archaeologists.