About the IoE

The IoE is a flagship program of Montana University System (MUS). It is a first-of-its-kind experiment for Montana to build a state-wide institute on ecosystem sciences. The vision is the creation of an institute that is accessible and promotes inclusion to all institutions of higher education within the state, state agencies, NGOs, and private industry with interests in ecosystem sciences. Its breadth is inclusive of all state and federal land management agencies as well as farmers, ranchers and other private land owners. Its role is to serve as a research and education portal on ecosystem sciences to the citizens of Montana and the nation in general.

Montana State University and The University of Montana are working together to enhance environmental and ecosystem science research, education, and engagement across the state and beyond via the Montana University System (MUS) Institute on Ecosystems.  The Montana Board of Regents approved the Montana Institute on Ecosystems (IoE) on November 18, 2011.  The Montana IoE was developed via collaborative planning efforts and was foundationally supported by a 5-year, $20 million dollar NSF science capacity building grant to Montana. Now the IoE is sustained by support from the Vice Presidents for Research at the University of Montana and Montana State University.  

Environmental and Ecosystem Science is one of five major research areas identified in the January 2011 Montana University System Science and Technology Plan:

“Montana is in a unique position of having one of the most pristine environments in the nation while exhibiting significant signs of environmental stress from our history of dependence on an extractive economy. This provides both the opportunity and the responsibility to conduct leading research on our own and similar environments around the world. The challenge will be to capitalize on what the environment has to offer while preserving for generations to come the lifestyle that has become a standard of Montana living.”

The Montana University System Institute on Ecosystems is a response to that plan, targeting environmental and ecosystem science.  This innovative statewide institute will leverage existing capacity across the entire Montana University System, with focal administrative hubs at Montana State University-Bozeman and the University of Montana-Missoula.

Dr. Maury Valett, IoE Director at The University of Montana
Dr. Bruce Maxwell, IoE Director at Montana State University


MSU IoE Office

Montana State University
605 Leon Johnson Hall
Bozeman, MT 59717
(406) 994-2374
MSU Director: Bruce Maxwell

UM IoE Office

The Universityi of Montana

The University of Montana
Davidson Honors College
Missoula, MT 59812
(406) 243-6058
UM Director: Maury Valett


Montana University System

Montana University System

Office of the Commissioner of Higher Education
2500 Broadway Street
Helena, MT 59620