In 2015 the Institute of Regional Ecology (IER) was integrated into CONICET, becoming a Dual Dependency Executive Unit CONICET-UNT (National University of Tucumán).


Its main objectives are:

  • The study of regional ecology, communities and populations in natural environments, urban and agroecosystems, with an emphasis on the Neotropical subtropics.
  • Spread knowledge to the general public about ecology and the interactions between nature and society.
  • Provide advice for the management of ecosystems and  solution of ecological problems.
  • To foster interactions with institutions and people from the region and abroad.
  • Promote sustainable development and conservation of regional diversity and ecosystem services.


Main lines of research:

  • Urban ecology. Carbon balance of the temperate and subtropical forests of South America under climate change and land use.
  • Development of native tuberous plants of the Argentine northwest with medicinal potential.
  • Ecology, distribution and life history of birds of the main ecosystems present in northwestern Argentina (Chaco, Yungas, Puna and Monte).
  • Change and efficiency of land use in Latin America and northwestern Argentina. Invasion by  exotic plants species.
  • Vegetation dynamics of .
  • Plant-animal interactions in natural and agricultural systems. Climate change in high mountain wetlands


The IER is organized internally in laboratories that are thematic / methodological drivelines:

  1. Laboratory of Ecological Research of the Yungas: it brings together efforts related to the study of the ecology of the mountain forests of the northwest of Argentina, with an emphasis on  studying  forest dynamics.
  2. Regional Change Laboratory, Remote Sensing and Geographic Information Systems: Techniques related to geographic information systems and remote sensing (satellite image analysis) are applied to obtain spatially explicit information about ecosystems on a regional scale.
  3. Laboratory of Bird Ecology: encompasses studies on the ecology and evolutionary ecology of plant-bird interactions, bird diversity  distribution, and reproductive biology.

The IER maintains an active interaction with other national and international institutions. In this way, its members have received national and international grants (such as CONICET, CIUNT, FONCyT, Fundación Antorchas) and foreign grants (such as the Fullbright Foundation, the World Wildlife Fund, the National Geographic Society, the International Union for (Eg, New York, Missouri, North Carolina, Massachusetts, Colorado, Florida, Puerto Rico, Wales, Manaus, Mexico, Costa Rica, and other countries). Delicious). Within the framework of exchange with other institutions, the IER receives groups of students from national and internationa universities.



In 1992, the Ecological Research Laboratory of the Yungas (LIEY), which was part of the Faculty of Natural Sciences and Instituto Miguel Lillo (FCN-IML), was created to support research, action, conservation and development activities in subtropical mountain forests. . It began as a research institution and was involved in numerous pioneering projects in the region, whose main results are summarized in three books (Brown and Grau 1993, 1995, Kappelle and Brown 2001)(1). As a result of its institutional growth, both in thematic diversity and geographic scope of its actions, in 2009 gave rise to the Institute of Regional Ecology, maintaining its dependence on the FCN-IML.   Since its foundation, a number of research topics have been developed, mainly related to the interests of its members, such as forest dynamics, plant-animal interactions, ecology of populations and communities, fragmentation of landscapes, ecology of exotic invasive species, plant ecophysiology , biogeography, and plant in vitro plant growth and multiplication. Many of these studies were carried out in coperation with other researchers and research centers of national and international universities. Simultaneously, the IER has developed different types of educational activities and training of human resources. The institution is extremely active in the organization of workshops, meetings, seminars and conferences, degree courses, postgraduate courses and outreach.



    Brown, A.D. And H. R. Grau. 1993. Nature and man in the Mountain Jungles. GTZ Project. Agroforestry development in rural communities in northwestern Argentina. 143 pp.
    Brown, A.D. and H. R. Grau. 1995. Research, conservation and development in subtropical mountain forests. Laboratory of Ecological Investigations of the Yungas. 270 pp.
    Kappelle, M. and A.D. Brown. 2001. The Neotropic Cloud Forest. National Institute of Biodiversity, Costa Rica 698 pp.