The Ministry of Education and Training of Vietnam established the Center for Natural Resources and Environmental Studies (CRES) in 1985 as a research and training centre within Hanoi University. In 1995, CRES was re-chartered as one of three research centres within Vietnam National University, the successor to Hanoi University.
CRES is a multi-disciplinary institution specializing in environmental research, education and training. Drawing on its own faculty of natural and social scientists, and in cooperation with national and international institutions, CRES is recognized in the fields of biodiversity conservation, human ecology research, agro ecosystems development, and environmental impact assessment. Through its publications, workshops, seminars and training courses, CRES has become an influential force in the promotion of environmental awareness. Through its community development activities, it has positively affected the lives of thousands of rural Vietnamese.
CRES has been a research arm of Vietnam National University for over 30 years. It has four main functions: (1) research; (2) training; (3) consultation; and (4) services on environmental issues. Drawing on its own faculty of natural and social scientists, and in cooperation with both national and international institutions, CRES has become a prominent force in the field of sustainable development. CRES has strong capacity in the areas of forest management, biodiversity conservation, socio-economics of resource use, and environmental policy. More recently, CRES links regional centres of research, education and training with each other and with national and international policy-makers, development organizations and funding agencies. It promotes dialogue between a variety of categories of people who are interested in issues of socially and ecologically sustainable development in the context of climate change.