Global Biodiversity Information Facility
The GBIF is an international organisation that is working to make the world"s biodiversity data accessible anywhere in the world. GBIF"s members include countries and international organisations who have signed a Memorandum of Understanding that they will share biodiversity data and contribute to the development of increasingly effective mechanisms for making those data available via the Internet.
GBIF has as its goal a worldwide network of participating nodes. In setting up a GBIF node, participants guarantee that they will openly and freely share biodiversity data. At the same time, data providers are assured that they will retain control of their own data.
By focusing on precise areas of emphasis, GBIF is making progress toward its goal:
- DATA ACCESS AND DATABASE INTEROPERABILITY (DADI) - Answering complex questions involving many disparate types of data from many sources depends on the development of standards for data and metadata.
- DIGITISATION OF NATURAL HISTORY COLLECTIONS (DIGIT) - GBIF encourages and supports the online provision of primary biodiversity data from natural history specimens and observational databases.
- ELECTRONIC CATALOGUE OF NAMES OF KNOWN ORGANISMS (ECAT) - Scientific names are the key to all scientific literature about species. A complete electronic listing is even more important for digital searching.
- OUTREACH AND CAPACITY BUILDING (OCB) - GBIF aims to provide software tools and training to bridge biodiversity information technology gaps for all countries around the world. GBIF also addresses scientific and technical collaboration in many areas, including repatriation of data and intellectual property rights.