Welcome to the website of the Institute of Earth Systems.
The Institute of Earth Systems (IES) was established in May 2010, effectively merging the former International Environment Institute (IEI) and the Institute of Agriculture (IoA) into a single entity.
The Institute is made up of two divisions, the Division of Environmental Management and Planning and the Division of Rural Sciences and Food Systems. Professor Alfred J. Vella is Chairman of the Institute of Earth Systems, whilst Professor Louis F. Cassar is Director of the Institute and Coordinator of the Division of Environmental Management and Planning, and Professor Everaldo Attard is Coordinator of the Division of Rural Sciences and Food Systems. The Institute also includes within it the Euro-Mediterranean Centre on Insular Coastal Dynamics (ICoD), headed by Professor Anton Micallef, as well as the Mediterranean Operational Centre for CEDARE (Centre for Environment and Development for the Arab Region and Europe).
The Earth Systems approach, around which the Institute is structured, goes beyond traditional disciplinary investigation by adopting a wide and integrated perspective of Earth's dynamic systems and of the interactions between system components. In particular, Earth Systems addresses the need for considering people and their activities within planning and management frameworks. The new approach adopted by the Institute of Earth Systems enables more cooperative and synergistic teaching and research in this regard.
Founded on over twenty years of experience in the field, the Institute regards human resource capacity building as its raison d’être, and works towards training specialists in various aspects of environmental science, environmental and natural resource management, integrated planning, and the rural sciences. To this end, the Institute runs interdisciplinary courses at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels, the latter including an International Masters Programme offered jointly with James Madison University (Virginia, USA). Additionally, the Institute provides training for continuing professional development through periodic short courses, seminars, and workshops, both in Malta and overseas.
The Institute also has a strong track record in international research, particularly but not exclusively in the Mediterranean region. Drawing on its network of research associates, the Institute regularly acts as a partner in research projects focusing on themes such as coastal management, biodiversity conservation, agricultural production, integrated water resources management, land conservation, stakeholder participation in environmental management, environmental assessment, landscape ecology, and sustainability. Through such projects, the Institute maintains close links with a number of foreign universities and international organizations. The Institute's participation in research further serves to ensure that its capacity building mission is tailored for application to real-world situations in a variety of contexts, and also provides opportunities to students for hands-on experience in international arenas.
We invite you to explore the Institute's website and to contact us with any queries, comments or suggestions, all of which are warmly welcomed!