CIBNOR (previously CIB – Center for Biological Research) was established in 1975 by the Government of the State of Baja California Sur and CONACYT [National Council for Science and Technology] to promote science and technology development in the area. From then on, several well-known and prestigious institutions have connected with the Center, including the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM), Universidad Autónoma de Baja California Sur (UABCS), and Instituto Politécnico Nacional (IPN). At present, CIBNOR forms part of the System of CONACYT Public Centers.
The beginning of what used to be CIB was very difficult due to the geographic isolation of the area, and above all, because of the lack of conditions to attract established researchers. As a result, the Center at that time was made up of recent undergraduates and a large number of students who were hired as technicians. Within a few years, the research staff, fostered by the institution, started to gain academic excellence through postgraduate studies overseas, and the students that were hired earned their degrees.
One of the great achievements of this time was the acquisition of “El Comitán”, which is a property 20 km north of La Paz with 217 hectares of natural land. The construction started where CIBNOR stands today.
At CIBNOR's beginning or first stage, Dr. Félix Córdoba Alva was the Director in charge from 1975 to 1984.
In 1984, Dr. Daniel Lluch Belda was appointed Director General and strengthened the research center in spite of a pronounced economic austerity in the country.
CIBNOR grew substantially, both in infrastructure and in human resources. A large number of researchers that were working on their graduate studies in Mexico and overseas were reinstated, same as others who saw in CIBNOR an opportunity for their professional development.
During the 13 years of Dr. Luch’s administration, human resources grew from 20 to 296; researchers with graduate studies increased from 9 to more than 40, and out-of-state research sites were opened in Guaymas and in Hermosillo, both in the state of Sonora. In 1994, the Graduate Program started with studies at doctoral level.
In 1997, Dr. Mario Martínez García was appointed Director General of CIBNOR until 2007. These years were characterized by institutional growth with highly qualified researchers and support groups dedicated and conscious of the importance of their work. Liaison with the economic sector of the country also strengthened the institution, and inter-institutional relationships with both national and international research centers and universities grew outstandingly.
As of March 2007, Dr. Sergio Hernández Vázquez started a new administration period in Centro de Investigaciones Biológicas del Noroeste, S.C. (CIBNOR) that will run from March 1, 2007 to February 28, 2012.
The new administration began restructuring the institution internally, which allowed renewing its structure and approach. These changes in ways of working respond to the changing reality of our times and to the scientific, social, and economic dynamics of the country.
Nowadays, CIBNOR has strengthened as a highly recognized institution at national and international level and as one of the best in the country.