Biodiversity is more than just the diversity of living species. It includes genetic and phenotypic diversity of organisms, functional diversity, interactions and the diversity of populations and whole ecosystems. The recent Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) report confirmed that our planet experiences a rapid loss of biodiversity with dramatic consequences for mankind. Answers to scientifically and societal relevant questions can only be found based on the availability of data integrated from multiple sources and building on different knowledge domains in science and society. The FAIR data principles provide a framework towards such integration.
To foster access to interoperable data, NFDI4BioDiversity focuses on the following six objectives:
- Promoting research data management as an integral part of biodiversity research
- Enabling FAIRness of data
- Consolidating FAIRness with quality
- Embedding NFDI4BioDiversity into the (inter-)national landscape
- Addressing NFDI-wide cross-cutting topics
- Promoting collaborative governance, viability and sustainability of data infrastructure services and science.
These objectives are implemented by the NFDI4BioDiversity work programme and its five task areas:
Task Area 1 – Community engagement (2involve): This task area will integrate across different knowledge holders and take care of research data management requests related to biodiversity data. A large part of all species data is collected by volunteers in natural history societies, NGOs, museums and citizen science projects as well as collected by different authorities This task area includes 23 use cases with community-driven topics and cross- domain user groups.
Task Area 2 – National and international networking (2connect): This task area ensures that any cross-domain activities and developments of NFDI4BioDiversity are coordinated and in-line with the overall development of the NFDI as well as international activities.
Task Area 3 – Long-term data, tools and service preservation, certification (2consolidate): This task area consolidates existing German infrastructures and data pipelines for long-term FAIR data preservation, archiving and publication and guides them towards certification.
Task Area 4 – Data integration, exploration, and exploitation – the NFDI-Research Data Commons (NFDI-RDC, 4all & 4future): This task area develops a Cloud-based research infrastructure that provides scientists, providers and users with the technical baseline for exchanging data and services in a collaborative research environment. This facilitates the integration, use, and export of biodiversity data as well as the joint development and reuse of services and data.
Task Area 5 – Coordination, collaborative governance & sustainability: This task area implements the governance model and coordination of NFDI4BioDiversity. It includes sustainability aspects and long-term maintenance.
In summary, as digitalization and liberation of data proceeds, NFDI4BioDiversity will foster community standards, quality management and documentation, as well as the harmonization and synthesis of heterogeneous data. It will pro-actively engage the user community to build a coordinated data management platform for all types of biodiversity data as a dedicated added value service for all users of NFDI.
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Prof. Dr. Frank Oliver Glöckner, Dr. Michael Diepenbroek
MARUM/University Bremen, GFBio e.V.