The National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH) investigates, preserves and disseminates the archaeological, anthropological, historical and paleontological heritage of the nation in order to strengthen the identity and memory of the society that holds.
INAH has full regulatory authority and leadership in the protection and conservation of tangible and intangible cultural heritage, and is at the forefront thanks to its excellence in research and in the training of professionals in the area of competence.
Its activities have high social impact, as with the different levels of government and society is involved in decision making for the conservation and knowledge of heritage and national memory.
The National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH) is the federal government agency established in 1939 to ensure research, technical definitions, protection and dissemination of prehistoric, archaeological, anthropological, historical and paleontological heritage of Mexico. Its creation has been essential to preserve our cultural heritage.
Actually, the INAH conducts its business through a structure consisting of a technical secretary responsible for supervise the realization of their substantive work, the tasks are carried out by seven national and 31 regional coordination centers in the states of the Republic.
The INAH is responsible for more than 110,000 historic monuments built between the sixteenth and nineteenth centuries, and 29,000 archaeological sites registered throughout the country, although it is estimated that there must be 200,000 sites with archaeological remains of the latter, 187 are open to the public.
It also is responsible for a network of 121 museums in the country divided in categories, obeying the amplitude and quality of its collections, its geographical location and the number of visitors.
There are national, regional, local, site, community and metropolitan museums. Its permanent exhibition realize the historical development of Mexico and many of the parts that they safeguard have also been part of national and international exhibitions of temporary character on various topics.
The main task is the academic research, for which work together over 800 academics in the history area, social anthropology, archeology, linguistics, ethnohistory, ethnology, physical anthropology, architecture, heritage conservation and restoration.
Academic work and research efforts also complement the training of professionals in the colleges of the Institute, such as: the National School of Anthropology and History, based in Mexico City, and the School of Anthropology North of Mexico, in Chihuahua, as well as the National School of Conservation, Restoration and Museology “Manuel del Castillo Negrete”, located in the capital of the Republic.
INAH, moreover, includes a set of documentary, and the National Library of Anthropology and History, which brings together the largest collection of publications of historical and anthropological character in Mexico, plus there documentary resources are safeguarded and codices historical significance.
There is also the National photograph library system, made up of 17 centers spread over the Republic (the largest is located in the city of Pachuca, Hidalgo) and guard together a real iconographic wealth; Sound Library, which is dedicated to recording and preserving evidence of musical tradition, and the film library, which exists in order to preserve the national and global film memory and promote the film culture of Mexico.
Outreach activities are carried out on our heritage not only with a vast periodicals program, but also through the production of sound and video recordings plus releases to the media and various multimedia resources. There is also an ongoing program of virtual tours to go over remote archaeological sites, museums and exhibitions.
Activities such as excavation and openness of archaeological sites or the rescue and restoration of historic monuments are, for this institution, as important as registration services of historical monuments and archaeological pieces that are in the care of individuals; educational services of museums, organizing cultural tours and reproduction of archaeological or historical pieces which seeks to prevent looting.