The Institute of Biodiversity and Ecosystem Research (IBER) was established on 1 July 2010 after merging of Institute of Zoology, Institute of Botany, and Central Laboratory of General Ecology on the basis of resolution of General Assembly of Bulgarian Academy of Sciences from 23.03.2010. Significant national and international researches are carried out in IBER in theoretical and applied aspects of ecology, biodiversity, environmental conservation and sustainable use of biological resources. Now the Institute has high qualified staff and the plan is to train such staff in the area of botany, mycology, zoology, ecology, hydrobiology, conservation biology, environmental genetic, evolutionary biology and other closely related scientific areas, as well as to ensure scientific information, to give methodic supply to governmental institutions and civil society structures, and to present the country in European Research Area within its competence.
Priority directions are:
• Structure and functioning of biotic communities, ecosystems and landscapes in the present and in the past.
• Diversity of organisms and their ecological and evolutionary relationships on all levels: from genetic and population to ecosystem level.
• Origin, development history and dynamics of biota and its components: flora, mycota and fauna.
• Scientific basis for conservation of living nature: identifying of threats and developing of methods for their removing or limiting.
• Approaches and methods for sustainable management of protected nature objects.
• Approaches and methods for sustainable management of biological resources, incl. studies on resource importance of species and communities not used before.
• Ecology and biology of species of economical and social importance, incl. approaches and methods for assessment; limiting the impact and regulation of density of invasive species, pests, parasites and other organisms of importance to medicine, nature protection, agriculture, forestry, fishery, hunting, managements of bio-resources and other human activities.
• Scientific basis of ecological risk assessment, the quality of environment and impact on it, elaboration of approaches and methods for biodiversity assessment, bio-monitoring and safety systems.
The Institute has well-equipped laboratories for various floristic, faunistic and ecological studies: chemical, phytochemical, genetic, karyological, biotechnological, parasitological, ecological microbiology, light-microscope laboratory, GIS-centre.
The Institute has several experimental field stations in Sreburna Biosphere Reserve, Kalimok Reserve, in the town of Sozopol, Atanasovsko Ezero Reserve, Beglika locality, Parangalitsa Biosphere Reserve, Plana Mt.
The scientific staff of IBER comprises 132 persons.