The Instituto del Bien Común (IBC) is a Peruvian non-governmental organization dedicated to promoting the best use of shared resources—rivers, lakes, forests, fisheries, protected areas, and community lands—in the Peruvian Amazon. Because these resources are vital to the well-being of Amazonian peoples, especially in a time of changing climate, IBC’s work directly influences the quality of life of rural communities and of all Peruvians. IBC works with community organizations, municipal and regional governments, and other stakeholders to promote participatory processes for territorial planning, development, natural resource use, and governance, grounded in a long-term vision of large, sustainable Amazonian landscapes.
Since its founding in 1998, IBC has mapped and ground-truthed more than three thousand indigenous territories in the Amazon and has collected spatial data for another four thousand Andean and coastal indigenous territories from government archives in order to create the country’s primary clearinghouse of spatial data on indigenous territories. IBC uses this information to lobby tirelessly for improved public policy on indigenous rights. Rich with information on mineral, hydrocarbon, and forest concessions, as well as infrastructure projects, IBC’s spatial datasets play a key role in both Amazonian and global data clearinghouses.
The Field Museum and IBC share a strong commitment to protecting forests, rivers, and wildlife in the Amazon basin, and to ensuring strong indigenous rights and a high quality of life among indigenous communities. IBC has been a key collaborator with the Keller Science Action Center since at least 2003, and the primary Peruvian partner of six of the Field Museum’s rapid inventories in Amazonian Peru. In Peru’s Putumayo drainage, our joint work has helped create millions of hectares of new conservation lands in favor of indigenous people and their forest-based livelihoods. Most recently, in partnership with indigenous communities, and indigenous federations, IBC and the Field Museum helped lay the groundwork for Yaguas National Park, a 2 million-acre wilderness area declared in January 2018.