Universite de Tours was founded in 1969. François Rabelais University of Tours is named after the French renaissance scientist. It was established as part of efforts to modernise and democratise higher education in France after the student protests of May 1968. In keeping with its vision, the university is a renowned specialist in renaissance studies and boasts a dedicated Centre for Advanced Studies in the Renaissance, as well as a recently added Institute of Technology and the Polytechnical Engineering School. Research at the University is particularly prominent in the areas of social sciences and humanities and food heritage, through a programme at the Institute of European History and Culture of Food.