(full name, Paleontological Institute of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR), the leading Soviet institution on paleontology. The Paleontological Institute is located in Moscow. It was organized in 1930 by A. A. Borisiak to replace several departments of the former Geological Museum of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR.
The institute’s main areas of study are the morphology, phytogeny, taxonomy, and ecology of the principal groups of the animal kingdom. Paleontological data are also used at the institute to solve problems of stratigraphy and paleography. The institute has the only department of paleoecology in the USSR, as well as a number of departments for the study of invertebrates and vertebrates. It also houses the Iu. A. Orlov Paleontological Museum, which exhibits fossil vertebrates.
The Paleontological Institute publishes Trudy (Transactions, since 1932), the series of pamphlets Instructions for the Collection and Study of Fossil Remains (since 1953), and other informational literature. The institute has a graduate program and is authorized to confer candidate’s and doctoral degrees.