In 1932 there was established Institute of Literature and Art on the base of Scientific Research Institute of Azerbaijan Republic, and it was replaced by joined Institute of Literature and Language founded in 1936.
Institute of Linguistics which is known as the main scientific research body in the field of Linguistics was established on March 27, 1945, on the same day with the establishment of NASA. It was approved in that very year and became one of the four scientific research institutes formed on Public Sciences Department. The organization was named after Azerbaijan's great poet I.Nasimi in 1973. Time of inception it consisted of four departments (Modern Azerbaijani Language Department, Azerbaijani Language History Department, Dialectology Department and Lexicography Department) and the first director of the Institute was academic Mammadaga Shiraliyev. In late 1949, the USSR State Prize laureate M.M.Mirbabayev was appointed director of the Institute. In 1950, Institute of Linguistics was combined with Institute of Literature, and in 1960 director of the Institute was academic Mammadaga Shiraliyev.
In 1969, the Institute of Literature and Linguistics separated and they started operating independently, and since then until 1987, the Institute was led by M.S.Shiraliyev. In 1988, corresponding member of Azerbaijan National Academy of Sciences PhD, prof. Zarifa Ismail Budaqova was selected as the director and led this research institution during two years.
In 1990-2011, director of the Institute of Linguistics of Azerbaijan National Academy of Sciences was honored scientist, laureate of the State PhD, professor Aghamusa Agasi Akhundov.
In 2012-2013 as director of the Institute worked professor Faxraddin Yadigar Veyselli. On December 25, 2013, outstanding turkologist-linguist, a member of the Academy of Sciences, honored scientist, Dr. Philology, professor Tofig Ismail Hajiyev led Institute of Linguistics. The institute working on the problems of formation and development of linguistics during its activities published more than 600 monographs and collective scientific and research works yearbooks and many of them appreciated highly both in the country, and abroad. Fundamental research center of Azerbaijani language, the leading organizer of linguistic problems is Institute of Linguistics of National Academy of Sciences. Giving impetus to the development of the Azerbaijani language and linguistics " State Program about Azerbaijani language in the context of globalization to comply with the requirements of the times on development of linguists in the country ",Order of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan opens the way to integration into the European and world science, gain international reputation. The main tasks of linguists are to carry out issues arising out of this political document as soon as possible and with dignity. World-wide recognition of the Azerbaijani language and linguistics, gaining universal reputation depends on creating this day driven its glorious past and the transition to the future.
Therefore, detailed examination of the history of language and linguists, modern globalization, strengthening the capability of penetrating of the Azerbaijani language in all fields of activity, study of ancient languages and cultures in order to integrate into the world of linguistics, intensive research, intensive research in psycholinguistic, sociolinguistics and lingvoculture aspects, as well as the development of computer linguistics are standing in front of necessary issues. Expanding spheres of influence of the Azerbaijani language, increasing level of implementation, conducting of monitoring for the full realization of the State language function are the leading directions of the work of the Institute.
In order to realize the tasks of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan as “ State Program about Azerbaijani language in the context of globalization to comply with the requirements of the times on development of linguists in the country” in November 2013 carried out structural changes in Azerbaijan National Academy of Sciences Institute of Linguistics named after Nasimi. As a result, some departments closed or combined, a number of departments were created in accordance with requirements of modern science.