Your help needed to improve online data on agricultural biodiversity

Your help needed to improve online data on agricultural biodiversity

How can we better gather, organize and make agricultural biodiversity data available so it can be used to inform research and policy? The Global Biodiversity Information Facility and Bioversity International encourage experts to provide feedback.

With more than 570 million records, shared freely by hundreds of institutions worldwide, the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) is the biggest biodiversity database on the Internet.

In 2015, the GBIF Secretariat and Bioversity International created a ‘Task Group on Data Fitness for Use in Agrobiodiversity’ to improve the quality and quantity of data on the GBIF portal that are important to agricultural biodiversity research and policy communities. These include data on agricultural biodiversity monitoring, gaps in conservation, crop wild relatives, collections and genebank inventories, crop suitability index and more.

The Task Group surveyed a selection of agricultural biodiversity experts to gather their opinions and suggestions. It also put together data use cases to help GBIF to test and develop technical solutions.

The results of the survey and the Task Group’s recommendations are now available in a report that is open for feedback.

Please submit your comments and suggestions through the GBIF community site. The deadline for feedback is 15 December 2015.

The Task Group focused mainly on plants and therefore, strongly encourages the biodiversity community working on tree species, livestock and pollinators to provide their feedback, particularly on the standards and features needed through to publish and use quality data, and if standards like DarwinCore and DarwinCore germplasm extension can address their specific data needs.

We also encourage the community to submit data use cases using the Use Case Template available on the report web page. Please send filled Use Case templates to [email protected]

By Elizabeth Arnaud, Bioversity International, Chair of the Task Group on Data Fitness for Use in Agrobiodiversity