Kunming Institute of Botany (KIB)

Kunming Institute of Botany (KIB) is an important research institute that is directly affiliated to the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) and dedicated to research in the fields of Botany and Phytochemistry. It is committed to exploration of the world of plants, to generating knowledge about them and developing their sustainable use to benefit people.  

KIB was originally called the Yunnan Provincial Institute of Agricultural and Forestry Botany, which was co-founded in July 1938 by Jingsheng Biology Institute and Yunnan State Department of Education. In April 1950, it was affiliated to CAS and renamed CAS Institute of Systematic Botany Kunming Station. In April 1959, the Kunming Institute of Botany of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (KIB/CAS) was constituted with the approval of the National Science Authority. The current Director of KIB is Prof. Dr. SUN Hang.  

The institute covers an area of 67.8 hectares (1,018 Mu), the main research divisions are the State Key Laboratory of Photochemistry and Plant Resources in West China, the Key Laboratory for Plant Diversity and Biogeography of East Asia, the Key Laboratory of Economic Plants and Biotechnology, and the Germplasm Bank of Wild Species. In addition, KIB manages two botanical gardens: one in Kunming and the other in Lijiang. In 2005, Kunming Botanical Garden was designated a “national environmental education base” by the China Association for Science and Technology. KIB has also cooperated with the World Agroforestry Center to establish a joint Centre for Mountain Ecosystem Studies, and closely worked with officials of Haiyan county, Zhejiang Province, to establish the “Haiyan Biotechnology Cooperation Center”, Institute of Tibetan Plateau Research at Kunming, also located at KIB campus. 

Technology Service Centre is the important part of the Kunming Biological Diversity Regional Center, CAS. This includes the Service Center for Information Technology in KIB, which has undertaken establishment of the CAS Super Computer Center (ScGrid) of National Strategic Bio Resources in Southwest China.Furthermore, KIB is involved in several equity participation enterprises, including Yunnan Yuntou Ecology and Environment Technology Co., Ltd, which is listed on Shenzhen Stock Exchange.  

At the end of 2015, KIB had 550 staff in total, including two CAS academicians, 10 recipients of awards from the National Science Fund for Distinguished Young Scholars, and three winners of prizes from the National Natural Science Foundation–Outstanding Youth Foundation. There are also seven successful national candidates for the Ten Million New Century Talents Project, 15 winners of special government awards issued by the State Council, two successful candidates for the Young and Middle-aged Leading Scientists, Engineers and Innovators Program, one for the Thousand Talents Program for Foreign Experts, four for the Thousand Talents Program for Young Outstanding Scientists, 26 for the Hundred-Talents Program (CAS), 21 for the Youth Innovation Promotion Association (YIPA) Program, 111 for the Dawn of West China Talent Training Program, one for the Yunnan Leading Scientists, Engineers and Innovators Program, and 14 for the Recruitment Program of High-level Experts of Yunnan Province. In addition, one KIB team has been selected to join the International Partnership for Innovation Program and three teams have joined the Innovative Team of Yunnan Province Program. 

In recent years, KIB has been actively involved in diverse kinds of national scientific projects and obtained remarkable results. From 2011 to 2015, the institute received research funds totaling 62.5 million USD, for initiatives and awards including six major national scientific research projects, two National Key Technology R&D projects, three Basic Science and Technology Special Programs, three National Major Scientific and Technological Special Projects for Significant New Drugs Development, four National Science Fund for Distinguished Young Scholars awards, and 32 National Natural Science Foundation of China (major program) awards.  

During the period 2011 to 2015, KIB published 2,082 SCI-listed papers, including 595 published in the top 15% of journals. In addition, KIB has been issued 140 patents, won 20 awards for scientific research on or above provincial levels, including one Yunnan State Natural Science Special Prize, three Yunnan State Natural Science first prizes, and two Yunnan State Prizes for Progress in Technology. Prof. WU Zhengyi received a State Supreme Science and Technology Award for 2007, the highest scientific prize awarded in China. In addition, Professors ZHOU Jun, SUN Handong and LI Dezhu have won Yunnan Province Science and Technology Awards for outstanding contributions.  

KIB has doctoral and master’s degree-granting authority, issued by the Academic Degrees Committee in 1979. It offers Doctor’s programs in Botany and Medicinal Chemistry, Master of Science programs in Botany, Medicinal Chemistry, Microbiology, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, professional Master’s programs in Biotechnology, Pharmacy Engineering and Pharmacy, and post-doctoral programs in Biology and Pharmacy. Currently, there are 192 PhD Candidates, 215 Master’s Candidates and 27 post-doctoral workers in KIB.  

The Botanical Society of Yunnan (which has won recognition as a grade 4A academic association through evaluation by the Yunnan Academic Association) and Ethnobotanical branch of Chinese Botanical Society are affiliated to KIB.  

KIB sponsors three academic journals: Plant Diversity, one of the core Journals of China and designated one of “the most influential international academic journals of China” in 2012; Natural Products & Bioprospecting, which began publication in August 2011, and was recognized by CA and PubMed in 2013; and Fungal Diversity, which has been recognized by SCI, its impact factor rose to 6.938 in 2014, and it is now the second-ranked journal in the field of fungal research. 

In recent months, KIB has been strenuously planning contributions to the “One–Three-Five strategy”, including ongoing organizational reform, formulation of new mission guidelines and strategy for the Institute, intensification of five major actions and development in four areas associated with the “Pioneer Initiative”. 

The new strategic aims for KIB are to make breakthrough advances in Botany, Phytochemistry and the exploration, utilization and conservation of plant resources (particularly in southwestern China, Southeast Asia and the Himalayas) and to make important contributions to sustainable development, including the restoration, conservation and sensitive use of resources to enhance development without ecological damage. 

Three major thrusts expected to provide breakthroughs are the “iFlora” research program (led by KIB), new drug research and development projects, and plant generation and production platforms. 

Four key scientific research areas include: exploration of functions and utilization of valued natural plant products; fundamental research into and industrial exploitation of plant resources; regional biotechnology demonstration and social development projects; iFlora and associated services. 

Five fields targeted for further development are: plant taxonomy and biological geography, phytochemistry and natural product development, preservation and utilization of wild germplasm resources, ethnobotany and local development, R & D and industrialization of plant resource. 

Director: Prof. SUN Hang  

Address: 132# Lanhei Road, Heilongtan, Kunming 650201, Yunnan, P.R. China  

Phone: 86-871-6522 3009  

Fax: 86-871-6522 3094  

Website: http://english.kib.cas.cn/