Open interest group about training and education in biodiversity informatics

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Scoping document for the interest group on biodiversity informatics training

1. Introduction

This document summarizes the scope of the interest group on biodiversity informatics training promoted by the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) [1]. It describes why this group was created, its target audience, its objectives and the planned activities in the framework of the group.

2. Rationale

Biodiversity informatics [2] is a relatively young field but it is expanding quickly across other disciplines of biology and computing. New tools, methods and approaches arise every year and there is an increasing need to train professionals working in this area.

Many groups are already dedicated to increasing awareness and training others in biodiversity informatics topics. In the context of GBIF, on-site events [3] are organized on a regular basis at the global, regional and national level. Several Participants offer permanent online courses [4] while many make available digital resources globally [5] and nationally. Some Participants aim to establish permanent education programmes on biodiversity informatics in their universities.

In a dynamic environment such as this, knowledge exchange, coordination of efforts and re-use of existing resources can make a big difference to lowering the investments needed to start a biodiversity informatics training initiative.

This group is established with the aim to create a space for discussion, debate, development, collaboration and mutual enrichment for professionals in biodiversity informatics training.

3. Target audience

The targeted members of this group are people in charge of organizing, coordinating and promoting training and capacity development activities in the field of biodiversity informatics.

People working in this area within the coordination teams of GBIF Participant Nodes are especially invited to participate in this group.

4. Objectives

 The objectives of this group are:

  1. To create a space for discussion and debate about biodiversity informatics training;
  2. To enable easy sharing of experiences, resources and information;
  3. To enable easy sharing of training opportunities (including events, but not restricted to them);
  4. To promote and support collaborative projects; and
  5. To promote biodiversity informatics training in general and in particular at university level (through graduate and post-graduate courses).

5. Projects

The specific projects carried out within the group will be proposed by its members. Some early proposals could be:

  1. A global inventory of training opportunities bulletin boards and websites;
  2. The creation of a global database of trainers;
  3. A landscape study of post graduate courses on biodiversity informatics;
  4. Testing the early prototypes of online courses;

6. Suggested activities

This group is hosted on the GBIF Community Site that offers certain tools to support online collaboration. To achieve the objectives mentioned above, the following activities are suggested for the group:

  1. Share experiences and best practices on the organization of events, creation of training resources, etc. via the group blog;
  2. Propose collaboration initiatives and projects through the groups forum/discussion page;
  3. Sharing of information about training events and opportunities through the forum/discussion page or dedicated pages; and
  4. Offer/request support on specific areas (i.e. engaging trainers, translating/testing materials) through the groups forum/discussion page.


[1] http://www.gbif.org/
[2] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biodiversity_informatics
[3] http://www.gbif.org/participation/training/events/
[4] http://www.gbif.org/participation/training/elearning/
[5] http://www.gbif.org/orc/

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Last updated 1759 days ago by Alberto González Talaván