Since its inception Fondazione Giangiacomo Feltrinelli has had an international feel, by virtue of an ambitious project to become a center of documentation and research of not only national importance, establishing contacts with cultural institutions in and outside of Europe. Since the early years of operation, a special bond has arisen with the International Institute of Social History in Amsterdam. Today, the Fondazione is part of numerous networks and associations of institutions including the International Association of Labour History Institutions (IALHI). IALHI today includes 60 institutions, such as the Friederich Ebert Stiftung, Bonn, the Bibliothèque de Documentation Internationale Contemporaine (BDIC) of Paris, the AMSAB-ISG of Ghent, the Fundação Mario Soares of Lisbon, the OSA of Budapest and the International Institute of Social History in Amsterdam. It is also a member of the Association of Italian cultural institutions, the European Foundation Center, the International Council on Archives, the Association for Slavic, East European and Eurasian Studies, the Human Development and Capability Association.

Fondazione Giangiacomo Feltrinelli carries out its research activities in collaboration with university centers, foundations and research institutes, including: Università degli Studi di Milano, Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Università Commerciale Luigi Bocconi, Università degli Studi di Pavia, Libera Università Internazionale di Studi Sociali (LUISS) Guido Carli of Rome, Istituto Universitario di Studi Superiori (IUSS) of Pavia, Scuola Internazionale Superiore di Studi Avanzati (SISSA) of Trieste, the Institut zur Zukunft der Arbeit (IZA) of Bonn, ISPI, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei, Fondazione Unipolis, Fondazione Reggio Children.