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How Global Is the Global Biodiversity Information Facility?  [PDF]
Chris Yesson, Peter W. Brewer, Tim Sutton, Neil Caithness, Jaspreet S. Pahwa, Mikhaila Burgess, W. Alec Gray, Richard J. White, Andrew C. Jones, Frank A. Bisby, Alastair Culham
PLOS ONE , 2007, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0001124
Abstract: There is a concerted global effort to digitize biodiversity occurrence data from herbarium and museum collections that together offer an unparalleled archive of life on Earth over the past few centuries. The Global Biodiversity Information Facility provides the largest single gateway to these data. Since 2004 it has provided a single point of access to specimen data from databases of biological surveys and collections. Biologists now have rapid access to more than 120 million observations, for use in many biological analyses. We investigate the quality and coverage of data digitally available, from the perspective of a biologist seeking distribution data for spatial analysis on a global scale. We present an example of automatic verification of geographic data using distributions from the International Legume Database and Information Service to test empirically, issues of geographic coverage and accuracy. There are over 1/2 million records covering 31% of all Legume species, and 84% of these records pass geographic validation. These data are not yet a global biodiversity resource for all species, or all countries. A user will encounter many biases and gaps in these data which should be understood before data are used or analyzed. The data are notably deficient in many of the world's biodiversity hotspots. The deficiencies in data coverage can be resolved by an increased application of resources to digitize and publish data throughout these most diverse regions. But in the push to provide ever more data online, we should not forget that consistent data quality is of paramount importance if the data are to be useful in capturing a meaningful picture of life on Earth.
Vidraru tourist region in the context of sustainable development
Cinq Continents , 2011,
Abstract: Région touristique Vidraru dans le contexte du développement durable. La vallée de la rivière Arges dans le secteur montagneux présente un potentiel touristique élevé particulièrement dans la région du lac d’accumulation Vidraru. Ce potentiel est mis en évidence par l’intermédiaire du cadre naturel et également par celui des objectifs antropiques à grande valeur culturelle et économique. Même si l’aménagement du lac d’accumulation a représenté une opportunité de développement des activités touristiques de la région, on identifie en présent de nombreux problèmes concernant la gestion touristique et également la pression sur l’environnement. De cette manière, il importe de faire une analyse sur le développement de la région touristique Vidraru de la perspective durable, afin d’identifier ainsi les solutions le plus viables.
Assessing the Primary Data Hosted by the Spanish Node of the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF)  [PDF]
Javier Otegui, Arturo H. Ari?o, María A. Encinas, Francisco Pando
PLOS ONE , 2013, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0055144
Abstract: In order to effectively understand and cope with the current ‘biodiversity crisis’, having large-enough sets of qualified data is necessary. Information facilitators such as the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) are ensuring increasing availability of primary biodiversity records by linking data collections spread over several institutions that have agreed to publish their data in a common access schema. We have assessed the primary records that one such publisher, the Spanish node of GBIF (GBIF.ES), hosts on behalf of a number of institutions, considered to be a highly representative sample of the total mass of available data for a country in order to know the quantity and quality of the information made available. Our results may provide an indication of the overall fitness-for-use in these data. We have found a number of patterns in the availability and accrual of data that seem to arise naturally from the digitization processes. Knowing these patterns and features may help deciding when and how these data can be used. Broadly, the error level seems low. The available data may be of capital importance for the development of biodiversity research, both locally and globally. However, wide swaths of records lack data elements such as georeferencing or taxonomical levels. Although the remaining information is ample and fit for many uses, improving the completeness of the records would likely increase the usability span for these data.
Biodiversity  [cached]
Editorial Office
Koers : Bulletin for Christian Scholarship , 2006, DOI: 10.4102/koers.v71i2-4.252
Abstract: The origin of life and the development of biodiversity
The perspectives of injection drug users regarding safer injecting education delivered through a supervised injecting facility
Danya Fast, Will Small, Evan Wood, Thomas Kerr
Harm Reduction Journal , 2008, DOI: 10.1186/1477-7517-5-32
Abstract: Semi-structured qualitative interviews were conducted with 50 individuals recruited from a cohort of SIF users known as the Scientific Evaluation of Supervised Injection (SEOSI) cohort. Audio recorded interviews elicited IDU perspectives regarding the provision of safer injecting education within the context of a SIF. Interviews were transcribed verbatim and a thematic analysis was conducted.Participant narratives indicate that significant gaps in knowledge regarding safer injecting practices exist among local IDU, and that these knowledge deficits result in unsafe injecting practices and negative health outcomes. However, IDU perspectives reveal that the SIF allows clients to identify and address these gaps in knowledge through a number of mechanisms that are unique to this facility, including targeted educational messaging that occurs as a part of the drug use cycle and not outside of it, in situ demonstration of safer injecting techniques that takes place the moment a client is experiencing difficulties, and enhanced opportunities to seek help from 'expert' healthcare professionals. Importantly, study participants indicated that the overall environment of the SIF promotes the adoption of safer injecting practices over time, both within and outside of the facility.We conclude that the SIF has been particularly effective in transmitting educational messages targeting unsafe and unhygienic injection practices to a population of active IDU. Consistent with previous work, results of this study indicate that SIFs represent a unique 'micro-environment' that can facilitate the reduction of numerous drug related harms.Injection drug use continues to present a major public health challenge in urban settings around the world [1,2]. Unsafe injection practices result in numerous forms of drug-related harm, including overdose [3], HIV/HCV transmission [4,5], and other forms of bacterial and viral infections [6].Safer injecting education has been widely employed in order to add
Progress in Biodiversity Informatics
Lisong Wang,Bin Chen,Liqiang Ji,Keping Ma
生物多样性 , 2010,
Abstract: Biodiversity Informatics is a young and rapidly growing field that brings information science and technologies to bear on the data and information generated by the study of biodiversity and related subjects. Recent years, biodiversity informatics community has made an extraordinary effort to digitize primary biodiversity data, and develop modelling tools, data integration, and county/ regional/ global biodiversity networks. In doing so, the community is creating an unprecedented global sharing of information and data produced by biodiversity science, and encouraging people to consider, survey and monitor natural biodiversity. Due to success of several international biodiversity informatics projects, such as Species 2000, Global Biodiversity Information Facility, Barcoding of Life and Encyclopedia of Life, digitized information on species inventories, herbarium specimens, multimedia and literature is available through internet. These projects not only make great contributions to sharing digitized biodiversity data, but also in prompting the implementation of important biodiversity information standards, such as Darwin Core, and in the establishment of regional and national biodiversity networks. These efforts will facilitate the future establishment of a strong information infrastructure for data sharing and exchange at a global scale. Besides focusing on browsing and searching digitized data, scientists should also work on building data mining and modeling, such as MAXENT for Ecological Niche Modelling and LifeDesk for taxonomist’s knowledge management. At the same time, the idea of citizen sciences gains popularity showing us the benefit of the public working closely with the scientific community in completing internet-based biodiversity informatics activities. Therefore, biodiversity informatics has broad prospects, and is helping to build strong facilities that will aid in implementing the goals set by Global Plant Conservation Strategy and related international treaties, resolving biodiversity crises and the management of biodiversity resources in global climate change scenarios.
Lakes reservoirs and ponds , 2010,
Abstract: Having an important hydrographic system, with a significant discharge potential and being located in a place that has all the forms of relief, the basin Arges is, at present, one of the most complex hydroelectric facilities from all the rivers with reservoirs in the country. Vidraru reservoir is the biggest of its 11 reservoirs. The information (data) about the management of the water in Walachia dates from the year 1576, and the oldest writing about protection against floods is known as the “Ipsilantis canal”, which stated that the big waters of Dambovita river were deviated at Lunguletu in the riverbed of Ciorogarla rivulet and dates from 1774.The effects caused by the hydrotehnical constructions on the environment are numerous and profound, both positive and negative. In this essay, the analysis of the environmental impact of the hydrotehnical facilities on Arges River is made from two perspectives. The first method of analysis is the Water Directive 2000/60 and the second method is basd on a SWOT analysis, a method taken from the economy, but very efficient in establishing the current state, and also the perpective of this environemental impact.
Databases, Scaling Practices, and the Globalization of Biodiversity  [cached]
Esther Turnhout,Susan Boonman-Berson
Ecology and Society , 2011,
Abstract: Since the Convention on Biological Diversity in 1992, biodiversity has become an important topic for scientific research. Much of this research is focused on measuring and mapping the current state of biodiversity, in terms of which species are present at which places and in which abundance, and making extrapolations and future projections, that is, determining the trends. Biodiversity databases are crucial components of these activities because they store information about biodiversity and make it digitally available. Useful biodiversity databases require data that are reliable, standardized, and fit for up-scaling. This paper uses material from the EBONE-project (European Biodiversity Observation Network) to illustrate how biodiversity databases are constructed, how data are negotiated and scaled, and how biodiversity is globalized. The findings show a continuous interplay between scientific ideals related to objectivity and pragmatic considerations related to feasibility and data availability. Statistics was a crucial feature of the discussions. It also proved to be the main device in up-scaling the data. The material presented shows that biodiversity is approached in an abstract, quantitative, and technical way, disconnected from the species and habitats that make up biodiversity and the people involved in collecting the data. Globalizing biodiversity involves decontextualization and standardization. This paper argues that while this is important if the results of projects like EBONE are to be usable in different contexts, there is a risk involved as it may lead to the alienation from the organizations and volunteers who collect the data upon which these projects rely.
The Biodiversity Informatics Potential Index  [cached]
Ari?o Arturo H,Chavan Vishwas,King Nick
BMC Bioinformatics , 2011, DOI: 10.1186/1471-2105-12-s15-s4
Abstract: Background Biodiversity informatics is a relatively new discipline extending computer science in the context of biodiversity data, and its development to date has not been uniform throughout the world. Digitizing effort and capacity building are costly, and ways should be found to prioritize them rationally. The proposed 'Biodiversity Informatics Potential (BIP) Index' seeks to fulfill such a prioritization role. We propose that the potential for biodiversity informatics be assessed through three concepts: (a) the intrinsic biodiversity potential (the biological richness or ecological diversity) of a country; (b) the capacity of the country to generate biodiversity data records; and (c) the availability of technical infrastructure in a country for managing and publishing such records. Methods Broadly, the techniques used to construct the BIP Index were rank correlation, multiple regression analysis, principal components analysis and optimization by linear programming. We built the BIP Index by finding a parsimonious set of country-level human, economic and environmental variables that best predicted the availability of primary biodiversity data accessible through the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) network, and constructing an optimized model with these variables. The model was then applied to all countries for which sufficient data existed, to obtain a score for each country. Countries were ranked according to that score. Results Many of the current GBIF participants ranked highly in the BIP Index, although some of them seemed not to have realized their biodiversity informatics potential. The BIP Index attributed low ranking to most non-participant countries; however, a few of them scored highly, suggesting that these would be high-return new participants if encouraged to contribute towards the GBIF mission of free and open access to biodiversity data. Conclusions The BIP Index could potentially help in (a) identifying countries most likely to contribute to filling gaps in digitized biodiversity data; (b) assisting countries potentially in need (for example mega-diverse) to mobilize resources and collect data that could be used in decision-making; and (c) allowing identification of which biodiversity informatics-resourced countries could afford to assist countries lacking in biodiversity informatics capacity, and which data-rich countries should benefit most from such help.
Global Biodiversity Informatics: setting the scene for a “new world” of ecological forecasting  [cached]
Vanderlei Perez Canhos,Sidnei de Souza,Renato De Giovanni,Dora Ann Lange Canhos
Biodiversity Informatics , 2004,
Abstract: Recent developments in information and communication technology are allowing new experiences in the integration, analysis and visualization of biodiversity information, and are leading to development of a new field of research, biodiversity informatics. Although this field has great potential in diverse realms, including basic biology, human economics, and public health, much of this potential remains to be explored. The success of several concerted international efforts depends largely on broad deployment of biodiversity informatics information and products. Several global and regional efforts are organizing and providing data for conservation and sustainable development research, including the Global Biodiversity Information Facility, the European Biodiversity Information Network, and the Inter-American Biodiversity Information Network. Critical to development of this field is building a biodiversity information infrastructure, making primary biodiversity data freely and openly available over the Internet. In addition to specimen and taxonomic data, access to non-biological environmental data is critical to spatial analysis and modeling of biodiversity. Adoption of standards and protocols and development of tools for collection management, data-cleaning, georeferencing, and modeling tools, are allowing a quantum leap in the area. Open access to research data and open-source tools are leading to a new era of web services and computational frameworks for spatial biodiversity analysis, bringing new opportunities and dimensions to novel approaches in ecological analysis, predictive modeling, and synthesis and visualization of biodiversity information.

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