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 and human beings today.

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

Our foundational goals are:

  • Studying the changes and transformations in human evolution and behaviour through fieldwork, laboratory analysis and research.
  • Developing and applying scientific thought and action based on the evolutionary continuum of human history and on the interactions between the human species and its environment.
  • Working with empirical data in the fields of archaeology, geology, biology and botany, in an open and trans-disciplinary scientific framework.
  • Developing evolutionary concepts and models, in which species-based knowledge is directly applied to the social realm.
  • Fulfilling our foundational goals by engaging in three lines of work: research, training and foresight.
  • Collaborating with other institutions, universities, and research centres 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 degrees and doctoral programmes.


About IPHES pdf (CA, ES)



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