The Ugyen Wangchuck Institute for Conservation and Environment (UWICE), a partner of the Bhutan Foundation, is a government-based environmental research and training institute. UWICE strives to foster better stewardship of our natural heritage – land, water, air, and species therein – through rigorous science-based research and transmission of cutting-edge science results to field practitioners, environmental leaders, and policy makers.
UWICE focuses on environmental needs and challenges within Bhutan and concentrates their research and other efforts on four major areas: sustainable forestry, conservation biology, water resources, and socio-economics and policy sciences. UWICE recognizes linkages between the way forestry is practiced to the dynamics of species conservation and persistence. They understand the implications of land-use practices and global climate change on water resources and energy requirements. Above all, they appreciate and seek to understand human impacts and impacts on humans by studying social patterns and economic implications of management and policy interventions.
In addition to conducting research, UWICE works to develop the expertise of Bhutan’s scientists:
- UWICE provides a one-year course in environment, forestry, and conservation.
- They also offer tailor-made courses within the field of conservation biology, sustainable forestry, and water resources for professionals working in these fields.
- UWICE offers opportunities for undergraduate students to conduct research projects as part of their undergraduate degree program.
As part of their initiative to encourage discourse and dialogue within the environmental community, UWICE also regularly organizes seminars and hosts conferences at national and international levels.
UWICE works in partnership with various agencies in conservation, including the Bhutan Foundation. In our partnership, we have developed projects including the HEROES (Himalayan Environmental Rhythms Observation and Evaulation System) program, tiger conservation program, river-guides of Panbang, takin conservation program, and Bhutan’s first conservation drone. The Bhutan Foundation continues to support UWICE’s work throughout Bhutan to protect and conserve Bhutan’s rich environment.