National Biodiversity Institute

Hills at Turrialba Volcano National Park
Hills at Turrialba Volcano National Park

The Instituto Nacional de Biodiversidad (INBio) is a private non-profit organization and research facility in Costa Rica. A pioneer in biodiversity management, the institute is highly regarded by scientists, development experts and conservationists. It is a modest facility located on the outskirts of San Jose providing a climate controlled environment for most of Costa Rica’s scattered biological collections.

Data Processing

Established in 1989, this biodiversity management center gathers data and boasts one of the most advance data processing facilities in the region. National Biodiversity Institute’s main efforts circle around supporting and promoting sustainable usage of the country’s biodiversity resources. Having absorbed Conservation Data Centre (CDC), INBio has experimented with new biodiversity data-management techniques, integrating it into the National Biodiversity Data Base. This non-governmental, public interest organization is working in collaboration with various government institutes, private groups, universities and public organizations, within and outside of Costa Rica. Funds for its program are channeled through national budget, private funds and international grants.

Main Areas

The National Biodiversity Institute of Costa Rica focuses on main subject areas including monitoring, conservation, environmental education, informatics, biological inventories and bio-prospecting. The institute generates information regarding the diverse species and ecosystems of the country. This information is then utilized, administered and processed for sustainable usage by both the private and public sectors.

SINAC (National System of Conservation Areas) is the strategic partner of National Biodiversity Institute, helping it conserve the protected areas of the country. The information gathered aims at creating a greater public awareness and increases the value of biodiversity. With the aid of biodiversity informatics and bio-prospecting, INBio has been able to assess and disseminate the data regarding biodiversity and apply it to full effect. This initiative has lead to the development of computer tools and commercial applications to support the process of analyzing and administrating biodiversity.


Much of the efforts of National Biodiversity Institute are reflected through the INBio theme park (INBioparque). Inaugurated in 2000, this park is helping to bring people in closer contact with the natural resources of Costa Rica, strengthening their environmental values.

Now a part of the international conservation effort, National Biodiversity Institute is applying scientific knowledge on biodiversity to ecotourism, medicine, agriculture and other economic activities. It has established research agreements for chemical studies, employed by numerous medical, pharmaceutical, agricultural, biotechnology and food industries throughout the country. These studies involve plants, marine organisms and insects found in Costa Rica.

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