IMBRIW is now Greece’s largest public institution studying marine biological resources and inland water environments.
NCMR and its parent entities had a long tradition in fisheries research and a small but dynamic organization of fisheries researchers have been working since the beginning of the 20th Century. Research in inland waters was late in coming to Greece, and NCMR’s institute of Inland waters (IIW) was the first such entity in any academic or governmental organization. However, a distinguished group of researchers and associates studied inland water themes at our parent institutions at least since the late ‘70s. The actual establishment of the IIW took place in 1994, when the provisions and procedures dictated by the Law (1514/85) were completed with the election of the Institute’s first director.
Both parent institutes of IMBRIW focused on fish-related work, aquatic resource management, wider environmental assessments and biodiversity conservation.
A remarkable increase in research and development took place after the mid-nineties in both fisheries and inland waters. The policy-relevant research was boosted by major Environmental EU Directives (e.g. work within the framework of the Birds and Habitats Directives- BHD, and slightly later the Water Framework Directive- WFD). IMBRIW also works closely with the other Institutes of HCMR. HCMR’s public outreach capacity increased greatly when in December 2005, the Cretaquarium in Heraklion was opened, one of the largest aquariums in Europe.