The Catalan Institute of Human Paleoecology and Social Evolution (IPHES) is a transdisciplinary institution that promotes advanced research, education and knowledge transfer, and social engagement with science. Therefore, we cross and combine different fields of science, humanities and social sciences, but also geosciences and biosciences to apply them to the study of human and social evolution. Our aim is to promote knowledge both about ancient human species of the past and about human beings today.

The IPHES was created in December 2004 as a non-profit foundation through an initiative of the Catalan Government, Rovira i Virgili University (URV) and the City of Tarragona.

Our foundational goals are:

  • The study of changes and transformation in human evolution and behaviour through fieldwork, laboratory analysis and research.
  • The development and application of scientific thought and action, based on the evolutionary continuum of human history and on the interactions between the human species and its environment.
  • Preferential work with empirical data in the fields of archaeology, geology, biology and botany, in an open and trans-disciplinary scientific framework.
  • The development of evolutionary concepts and models, in which species-based knowledge is directly applied to the social realm.
  • In order to fulfil its foundational goals, the IPHES engages in three lines of work: research, training and foresight.
  • The IPHES wishes to collaborate with other institutions, universities, and research centers, at an international level.

We finance our activities through a combination of funds and subsidies from public institutions, competitive grants, donations and services offered to the private sector, mainly to the experience based industry (cultural heritage, sustainability, management, digital multi-media, etc.)

We train the future generation of scientists by offering high-quality educational programmes from bachelor's degrees to master's and doctorates.

The IPHES belongs to the Catalan Research Centres Network (CERCA)