Founded in 1982, the Institute of Earth Sciences (IES) is one of ~30 institutes and centers of the Academia Sinica (AS), the premier governmental organization for basic research in all academic disciplines (including physical, life and humanity sciences) in Taiwan.
IES is housed in a six-floor building and annexes with proper research and laboratory spaces, physically situated in the main campus of AS in east Taipei city. About 35 staff scientists and ~40 postdoctoral fellows and an engineering team make up the main research workforce, with strong support provided by the administrative and logistic personnel. IES conducts research in two major disciplines: geophysics and geochemistry, for global as well as regional Taiwan studies.
Owing to its historical heritage, IES’s geophysical research is particularly strong in seismology, both observational and theoretical. In addition, geomagnetic research expertise has long been established. Recent years have seen rapid and solid growth in geodetic applications in geophysics and active tectonics, particularly GPS, gravity and remote sensing techniques. New thrusts include mantle dynamics modeling, heat flow, and space remote sensing. IES operates several island-wide geophysical and geodetic measurement networks (along with those by other agencies such as the Central Weather Bureau) on Taiwan and nearby islets, and expanding into various neighboring countries under international cooperation.
In geochemistry, research areas relate to tectonics, orogeny, volcanology, geology and cosmology based mainly on radioactive and stable isotope techniques, mineralogy, and land as well as marine geological dating techniques. IES is well equipped with state-of-the-art geochemical instruments and facilities of pertinent function and scale.
IES’ staff scientists routinely collaborate with university colleagues in various research projects. Although no direct teaching duties, they actively participate in education of all levels, whether it is graduate training, college intern, or high school outreach. IES also runs a TIGP PhD Program in Earth System Sciences for AS aimed at international students. IES maintains close relationship with the Research Center for Environmental Changes (RCEC) of the AS, both in research subjects and professional personnel. Additional office space in RCEC’s new building that is made available to IES add to further physical growth of IES into the exciting future.