International Research and Training Center – Ecuador


Ecuador is a global priority for the conservation of biodiversity. It combines the highest density of species diversity per unit area in the world, the highest human population density in South America, and an economy based on exploitation of natural resources. The Center for Tropical Research (CTR) established an International Research and Training Center (IRTC) in Quito, Ecuador in late 2001. Our mission is to achieve conservation results by combining highest quality scientific research with on-the-ground socioeconomic approaches in close collaboration with Ecuadorian nationals.

The Ecuador IRTC is directed by Dr. Jordan Karubian, CTR’s Latin America Director. Leveraging four years of in-country presence, Dr. Karubian has developed strong partnerships with local and international collaborators in a range of disciplines from universities, government, and non-governmental organizations (NGOs). These relationships have developed into research, training, and social outreach projects throughout the country, with a priority focus on the Chocó rainforests of northwestern Ecuador.

CTR’s scientific research program in Ecuador is notable for its breadth and depth. Current studies include focused research on high profile, endangered species like the Long-wattled Umbrellabird and the Scarlet Macaw, as well as multidisciplinary approaches to broader-level ecological and evolutionary processes and patterns. All research conducted by CTR includes Ecuadorians at various levels and is designed to provide information needed for conservation.


CTR has produced a 20-minute video of CTR’s research, training, and educational projects in the Chocó rainforests of Ecuador. To request a DVD of the video, please email Jordan Karubian at A shortened version of the video can be viewed below.


education and outreach

Education and Outreach

Overview Our most dramatic and exciting advances in 2005 have come in the area of community outreach and education. This aspect of the project is co-designed and implemented by Ms.…

research across ecuador and beyond

Research Across Ecuador and Beyond

Overview The Center for Tropical Research conducts cutting edge research in the Amazon and the Andes to complement our primary focus on the Chocó. In these projects, CTR combines the…

photo in the news: regurgitating birds aid rain forest

Research in the Chocó Rainforest

Our Efforts Top-level scientific research is the mainstay of our efforts in Ecuador. The breadth, depth, and quality of our science is what sets us apart from other conservation organizations.…



Overview CTR believes that building in-country capacity is fundamental to achieving long-term conservation results in Ecuador. In keeping with this goal, we have provided training and collaboration to a broad…