Institute of Urban Ecology

Founded in 1984, the Institute of Urban Ecology at Douglas College has the unofficial motto “There is nature in my city”.

Contact us:



Facebook: Urban Ecology (IUE)

Instagram: @IUEATDC

LinkedIn: Urban Ecology

There is nature in my city

This motto reflects two important ideas:

Urban areas have an inherent ecological nature.

Community engagement is an explicit component of the work of the IUE and a vital part of urban ecological sustainability.

Urban Ecology Research

You can join our citizen science team!  People of all ages and all backgrounds are welcome to help us collect data on a newly introduced beetle species from Europe.

Join our Facebook group IUE Beetle Watch 2020 here.

FREE environmental education

Since its establishment, IUE has been involved in a myriad of community-based activities and projects. These projects include: an environmental outreach and education program that reaches about 2000 participants in schools and community organizations in Metro Vancouver each year.

Schools and community groups of all ages can book a FREE private workshop.  To see what topics are offered this year, click here!

We also host monthly FREE workshops on the last Monday of each month.  Anyone is welcome to join!  This year we have adapted all our workshops to be held safely online.  You will need access to the internet and Zoom to attend. 

To find out what is happening each month, click here!

Research projects

The IUE also undertakes a variety of research projects related to urban sustainability issues. Recent and current projects include: Urban Bug Gardens, which examined beneficial insects in a community garden in Coquitlam in relation to different planting regimes in the test plots; Biological Control of Greenhouse Pests, which is seeking to develop biological controls for greenhouse pests like aphids and tomato psyllids; Ground Beetles in Urban Habitat Fragments, where these beetles act as bioindicators of habitat health; and the Delta Migratory Bird Study, which looked at the impact of various land uses on migratory bird foraging behaviours.

If you would like to join our citizen science beetle watch team, click here!

Staff Members

Dr. Robert McGregor Executive Director

Naomi Higo IUE Coordinator