A decadal view of biodiversity informatics: challenges and priorities

Hardisty, A., Roberts, D. and The Biodiversity Informatics Community, (2013) A decadal view of biodiversity informatics: challenges and priorities. BMC Ecology, 13, 16. (doi: 10.1186/1472-6785-13-16) (PMID:23587026) (PMCID:PMC3843378)

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Biodiversity informatics plays a central enabling role in the research community's efforts to address scientific conservation and sustainability issues. Great strides have been made in the past decade establishing a framework for sharing data, where taxonomy and systematics has been perceived as the most prominent discipline involved. To some extent this is inevitable, given the use of species names as the pivot around which information is organised. To address the urgent questions around conservation, land-use, environmental change, sustainability, food security and ecosystem services that are facing Governments worldwide, we need to understand how the ecosystem works. So, we need a systems approach to understanding biodiversity that moves significantly beyond taxonomy and species observations. Such an approach needs to look at the whole system to address species interactions, both with their environment and with other species. It is clear that some barriers to progress are sociological, basically persuading people to use the technological solutions that are already available. This is best addressed by developing more effective systems that deliver immediate benefit to the user, hiding the majority of the technology behind simple user interfaces. An infrastructure should be a space in which activities take place and, as such, should be effectively invisible. This community consultation paper positions the role of biodiversity informatics, for the next decade, presenting the actions needed to link the various biodiversity infrastructures invisibly and to facilitate understanding that can support both business and policy-makers. The community considers the goal in biodiversity informatics to be full integration of the biodiversity research community, including citizens’ science, through a commonly-shared, sustainable e-infrastructure across all sub-disciplines that reliably serves science and society alike.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:Roderic Page is a contributing author to The Biodiversity Informatics Community.
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Page, Professor Roderic
Authors: Hardisty, A., Roberts, D., and The Biodiversity Informatics Community,
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Biodiversity, One Health & Veterinary Medicine
Journal Name:BMC Ecology
Publisher:BioMed Central
ISSN (Online):1472-6785
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2013 Hardisty et al.
First Published:First published in BMC Ecology 13: 16
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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