About the Institute

Our Vision

We are a center for excellence where creativity and accomplishments result in timely products and services that anticipate te needs of society as it mitigates and adapts to environmental change.

Our Mission

Our mission is to develop and disseminate scientifically based knowledge that contributes to the conservation of forests, wildlife, and watersheds of the American Tropics in the context of environmental change.

The Setting

The International Institute of Tropical Forestry (the Institute, or IITF) is a tropical forestry research and technology transfer institute. It is located in Río Piedras, Puerto Rico (Fig. 1), and has a long and productive history. Created in 1939 as the Tropical Forest Experiment Station in cooperation with the University of Puerto Rico, the Institute has been in operation continually for 72 years. The IITF serves as a focal point for bringing external research and educational resources to bear on issues affecting tropical forests and grasslands. Because of the high diversity of tropical landscapes and the multicultural and multilingual user base, IITF employees must have specialized knowledge and skills in several fields. Our assets include an exceptional cadre of bilingual and trilingual scientists, natural resources managers, professionals, technicians, state-of-the-art facilities, laboratories, experimental research forests, an excellent tropical forestry library, a long tradition of collaborations, and constituents who are highly supportive of our mission and programs.