Plazi News

Plazi participating at the Swiss Systematics Society-Day 2014, Geneva, November 14

Plazi presented at the SSS-Day 2014 a brief introduction to the Bouchout Declaration and offered contributing to the planned Species 200 exhibit during the 200 years anniversary of the Swiss Academy of Sciences in 2015. It is planned to exhibit 200 species described with the support of the ScNat, for which Plazi might provide access to the repective treatments and linked type images.

Plazi participating at the Improving Data Access and Research Transparency (DART) in Switzerland meeting, Berne, November 7

The one-day workshop brought together researchers, editors of scientific journals, representatives of funding agencies and data archives. The main goal of the proposed workshop is to discuss the state of the art in data access and research transparency (DART) in the social sciences. See also #fors14 on Twitter.

Pro-iBiosphere Final Review Meeting, Brussels, October 30

The final review of the two years EU-FP7 funded project Pro-iBiosphere passed on a very positive note. A special mention by the EU-Program manager Antonios Barbas got the Bouchout Declaration, coordinated by Plazi.

Plazi providing two lectures at the forthcoming TDWG conference in Jönköping, SWE. October 26-31.

Plazi members will present in the opening session of the TDWG 2014 an introduction to the Bouchout Declaration and in the session on Citizen Science and Crowdsourcing the Plazi One Million Treatment Goal.

Plazi is actively participating at the 4th Plenary of the Research Data Alliance, Amsterdam, NL, September 22-24

Plazi will be participating at the 4th Plenary of the RDA in the IG Biodiversity Data Integration, Legal Interoperability of Research Data IG (providing a case study) and Persistent Identifier IG (reporting on Bouchout Declaration)

The RDA was started in 2013 by a core group of interested agencies – the European Commission, the US National Science Foundation and National Institute of Standards and Technology, and the Australian Government’s Department of Innovation. Other agencies, countries, companies, associations and institutes are due to join. RDA also has a broad, committed membership of individuals – now 1600 from 70+ countries since RDA was launched in March 2013 - dedicated to improving data exchange.

The Research Data Alliance (RDA) builds the social and technical bridges that enable open sharing of data. The RDA vision is researchers and innovators openly sharing data across technologies, disciplines, and countries to address the grand challenges of society.

Plazi joins the Global Coalition of Access to Research, Science and Education Organizations' call on STM to Withdraw New Model Licenses, August 11, 2014

As a group, the undersigned organizations share a vision in which scholarly knowledge is a common good, a resource for the whole of humanity.

The Association of Scientific, Technical and Medical Publishers has recently released a set of model licenses for research articles. In their current formulation, these licenses would limit the use, reuse and exploitation of research. They would make it difficult, confusing or impossible to combine these research outputs with other public resources and sources of knowledge to the benefit of both science and society.

The signatory organizations listed call on the STM Association to withdraw the model license.

"Open exchange of scientific knowledge and European copyright: The case of biodiversity information" published, June 13, 2014

In their most recent publication, Plazi members discuss a legal point of view as to what will be needed in Europe to bring distributed biodiversity information together and facilitate its re-use by data mining, integration into semantic knowledge systems, and similar techniques.

Bouchout Declaration successfully launched (June 12, 2014)

The Bouchout Declaration on Open Biodiversity Knowledge Management has been successfully launched on June 12 at the Bouchout Castle, National Botanic Garden Meise, Belgium during the final meeting of the EU-funded pro-Biosphere project.

57 organizations and 58 individuals signed the Declaration, including some of the largest natural history institutions like Kew, Naturalis, Museum für Naturkunde Berlin, Botanischer Garten und Botanisches Museum Berlin, Harvard MCZ, California Academy of Sciences, InBIO and the Brazilian Virtual Herbarium of Flora and Fungi; scientific institutions like GBIF, IUBS or the Belgian Science Policy Office.

The Declaration remains open to sign – please consider discussing its principles, consider implementing them and ultimately to sign it.

Plazi invited speaker at "Une journée de réflexion et d’échange: « Be open ! » / Swets Kundentag in Bern : „Be open!“" (May 6)

Plazi will talk at the Swets Kundentag in Bern: „Be open! conference at the University of Berne, Switzerland, June 23, about the relevance of Open Access to research data and results for the future of biodiversity research.

EU-BON data sharing agreement adopted (April 29)

At the General Assembly of EU-BON in Crete, April 1, 2014, the plenary adopted the EU-BON Data Sharing Agreement unanimously. The Agreement has been developed under the lead of Plazi.

Plazi Treatment Repository on Twitter (April 23)

The growth of the Plazi Treatment Repository can be followed on Twitter using @plazi_treat

On the difference between copyright and attribution in scientific work (April 9)

In a follow-up interview to the publication by Patterson et al. introducing the Blue List in BIOME, Plazi's president explains the history that led to the publication of the Blue List, common misunderstandings of coypright, why copyright cannot be used to assure attribution to works, and how this relates to big data.

Despatch from the field: New species discovery, description and data sharing in less than 30 days (March 27)

Plazi’s expertise has helped to establish a new workflow between GBIF, EOL and Pensoft Publishers' Biodiversity Data Journal to automatically exports treatment and occurrence data into a Darwin Core Archive, a standard format used by GBIF and other networks to share data from many different sources. This allows the simultaneous description of wide dissemination of the underlying data (read the story)

The ' Blue List' - Plazi helps to identify elements of taxonomic information to which copyright does not apply (March 26)

Plazi's expertise in Intellectual Property law and Taxonomy has helped to identify those elements of taxonomic information to which copyright does not apply and can be freely shared and re-used. More information here..

Plazi at the 8th International Congress of Dipterology, Potsdam, August 10-15, 2014

Plazi will present an invited lecture on markup issues and taxonomic literature at the 8th International Congress of Dipterology.

Plazi at the General Assembly of EU-BON, Crete, March 31 - April 3, 2014

Plazi is participating as Deputy WP-leader (WP3) and Task-leader (3.4) at the EU-BON General Assembly in Crete.

Plazi at the Research Data Alliance Third Plenary Meeting, March 26-28, 2014, Dublin

Plazi, represented by Willi Egloff and Donat Agosti, and as member of the RDA-CODATA Legal Interoperability Interest Group, is presenting on March 27 (11:30) at the RDA 3rd Plenary Meeting a case study within the RDA Interest Group on Legal Interoperability of Research Data covering the legal aspects of a treatment repository.

"Scientific names of organisms: attribution, rights, and licensing" article in BMC Research Notes "Highly" accessed (March 23)

With 3851 accesses, the article on copyright is qualified as highly accessed in BMC Research Notes.

Plazi at the Pro-iBiosphere Hackaton, Leiden, March 17-20, 2014

The purpose of the Hackaton is to enrich structured biodiversity input data with semantic links to related resources and concepts, for example links from named locations to GeoNames, from taxon names to taxon URIs, from characters and traits to trait ontologies, and so on. Plazi is represented by Guido Sautter

"Scientific names of organisms: attribution, rights, and licensing" published in BMC Research Notes (February 4, 2014)

The outcome of the Attribution, Rights and Licensing workshop in Arizona, April 2013, published in BMC Research Notes.

Attribution, Rights and Licensing of scientific names of organisms and compilation of names

Plazi participated in a workshop, held at Arizona State University, April 15 -17, 2013

The Global Names Project invited to a workshop to explore options and to make
recommendations as to issues that relate to attribution, rights and licensing of names and compilations of names. The aim of the workshop that was held from April 15 to 17, 2013, at the Arizona State University in Tempe was the elaborating of a report that clarifies if and how we share names.

The workshop led together a group of biologists with lawyers working in the sector of biology. The group headed by David J. Patterson (Global Names Project) was composed of David Eades (Catalogue of Life), George Garrity (Names4Life Services), Charles Miller (Global Names Project / Tropicos), Jonathan Rees (Open Trees) and Dave Remsen (Global Biodiversity Information Facility). The legal experts were Romy Drysdale (General Counsel at Arizona Technology Enterprises), Willi Egloff (Plazi), Puneet Kishor (Creative Commons) and Art Lee (General Counsel for Arizona State Univerity).

The group widely agreed that taxonomic names as well as compilations of taxonomic names are established following standardized criteria and in a standardized language. As copyright does not protect content, but individual forms of presentation, neither names nor compilations of names do qualify as works in the sense of copyright law. Consequently, there is no ownership in names and compilations of names and therefore no space for licensing. Names and compilations of names belong to the public domain.

Acknowledging the lacking legal base for any intellectual property, the main question arose how to give attribution to scientific data elaborated by others. Even if there is no ownership in a juridical sense, there is a scientific and ethical necessity to cite the scientists who had originally created the names and their compilations. The report that will resume the results obtained during the workshop shall design guidelines to a planned code of conduct on attribution of scientific names of organisms and compilations of names.

Begin of the EU funded project EU-BON

December 1, 2012 is the starting date of the EU FP7 funded project EU-BON - Building the European Biodiversity Observation Network. The main objective of EU BON is to build a substantial part of the Group on Earth Observation’s Biodiversity Observation Network (GEO BON). In light of the new Intergovernmental science-policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES), such a network and approach are imperative for attaining efficient processes of data collation, analysis and provisioning to stakeholders.

A key feature of EU BON will be the delivery of near-real-time relevant data – both from on-ground observation and remote sensing – to the various stakeholders and end users ranging from local to global levels. Doing so will require (1) the establishment and adoption of new data standards and integration techniques, (2) harmonized data collection, and (3) the development of new approaches and strategies for future biodiversity monitoring and assessment. We will develop and provide practical indicators and interpretation tools for endusers from, e.g., agriculture to nature conservation. EU BON will support national and international authorities, as well as private stakeholders and the general public with integrated and scientifically sound biodiversity data analyses. The project intends to develop a full-scale model for a durable mechanism for higher level integration of biodiversity information providers and users through a network of networks approach scalable from local to global biodiversity observation systems.

Plazi is task leader of Task3.4, developing a mechanism to provide trait and observation data as input to the modeling components of EU-BON.

Start of the EU funded project Pro-iBiosphere

September 1, 2012 is the starting date of the EU funded project Pro-iBiosphere. Biodiversity core data and information constitutes an important source of knowledge for many disciplines. In order to facilitate access to this knowledge, technical and semantic interoperability barriers need to be addressed.These activities will prepare the ground for an integrative system for intelligent management of biodiversity knowledge. A system that facilitates open access to taxonomic data is essential because it will allow a sustainable provision of high quality data to partners and users, including e-science infrastructure projects as well as global initiatives on biodiversity informatics. The kick-off meeting will take place in Leiden, September 27/28, as well as the launch of the respective Web site.

The 1000st marked-up publication on Plazi

The 1000st marked-up publication has been uploaded by Thomas Stierfhof on September 29. This publication includes Plazi's treatments 15821 and 15822 of Hoplophthiracarus and Hoplophthiracarus pavidus respectively.

Plazi at the Life and Literature Conference, Chicago, November 14/15, 2011

the Biodiversity Heritage Library is organizing a conference, Life and Literature, that will convene librarians, biologists, computer scientists, publishers, students, and other stakeholders to set the agenda for biodiversity literature digitizing and its networked environment for the next four to five years.

Plazi at the International Botanical Congress, Melbourne, July 25, 2011

Donat Agosti will present a lecture on XML based markup and a poster authored by Guido Sautter will be available. The abstracts are available as pdf.

MycoKeys launched, July 19, 2011

MycoKeys – a new journal in systematic and biology of fungi (including lichens) has been launched by Pensoft Publishers,based on Taxpub NLM DTD.

Plazi at the Cybertaxonomy meeting at the Biosynthesis Center at the Field Museum in Chicago, May 30 - June 2, 2011

The goal of the meeting is to develop practical tools and strategies to transfer taxonomic data to major online resources including EOL.

Description of Taxpub elements available, March 23, 2011

The descriptions of the Taxpub NLM DTD taxonomic elements are now published. A description of Taxpub is available.

Plazi at the Scripting Life conference, Paris January 20-21, 2011

Donat Agosti is presenting a lecture Biodiversity Literature for the 21st Century at the Scripting Life meeting in Paris.

Taxpub presentation at JATS-Con, November 2, 2010; Bethesda

Terry Catapano presents the paper Taxpub: An Extension of the NLM/NCBI Journal Publishing DTD for Taxonomic Descriptions at the JATS-Con 2010. It outlines the history, structure and pros and con of the approach chosen to create Taxpub.

Phytokeys uses Taxpub. November 1, 2010

Phytokeys is the second journal that is based on Taxpub and extending the use of the DTD to botany.

Plazi meeting at Harvard's Herbarium, October 2-3, 2010

A tecnical face to face meeting of Plazi members to assess the current status of ongoing work, assess the development of taxpub and other ongoing projects.

Plazi at TDWG Woods Hole Conference, November 26 -30, 2010

Plazi team members participate at the annual TDWG meeting in Woods Hole and present the following lectures in the Mass Digitization Projects and Electronic Publications for Scientists, Librarians, Publishers and Informaticians symposium: Semantic tagging, semantic enhancements and XML-based editorial workflow from the viewpoint of a biodiversity publisher (Lyubomir Peneve and The future of Informatics in digital literature – or literature and its (digital) future (Donat Agosti) and computer demo Let Taxonomists do Taxonomists‘ Work – even in Legacy Literature Digitization & Markup (Guido Sautter.

Zookeys uses Taxpub. June 30, 2010

A very productive collaboration with Zookeys/Pensoft led to the first usage of taxpub, our NLM publishing and archiving DTD extension that has been created with the support from NLM. This also includes a journal production workflow to handle XML as well as multiple ways to submit manuscripts from a text to a highly fine grained marked document. More

Taxonomy information exchange-paper shortlisted for the BioMed Central Open Data award. June 2010

Our paper describing Plazi's information exchange policy (Agosti & Egloff, 2009) has been shortlisted on the BMC Open Access prize, despite not fulfilling the original requirements of being a data centric paper explained in Cameron Neylon's, one of the judges, blog.

Plazi at the 7th International Congress of Hymenopterists, June 20-26, 2010

Donat Agosti is presenting a lecture "The future of taxonomic communication and publishing" and with Lyubo Penev is participating on a group discussion "A new model for the journal of Hymenoptera Research" More...

PLoS Semantic Tagging Workshop, April 9-11, 2010

Integrating semantic markup of taxonomic and systematic biology elements in the PLoS Biodiversity and Systematic Hub.

Plazi General Assembly, Karlsruhe, March 3-7, 2010

Plazi's general assembly will be held at the Staatliches Museum of Naturkunde in Karlsruhe. An emphasis will be on prospective publishing, future trends and reassessing ongoing work.

Plazi at Zukunft des Urheberrechts – Interessenausgleich oder Paradigmenwechsel?

Donat Agosti is representing the science case at 9th annual meeting of the SF-FS Urheberrechtstagung at the Eidgenössisches Institut für Geistiges Eigentum, Bern.

Plazi at the School of Public Health, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Teheran, Iran, January 19, 2010

Donat Agosti presented and invited lecture "The impact of information technology: Prospects in biodiversity research and communication" to initiate the discussions leading to joint projects.

Plazi at the Enhanced Taxonomic Publications meeting, National Libraries of Medicine, Bethesday, MD, January 4-5, 2010

In collaboration with the National Library of Medicine, Plazi organized a workshop to enhance the current draft of taxpub a taxonomy specific NLM publishing and archiving DTD for prospective publishing.

Plazi at the Simpòsio de Mirmecologia, Ouro Preto, MG, Brazil, November 17-21, 2009

Christiana Klingenberg and Donat Agosti presented a lecture and a training course at the XIX Simpòsio de Mirmecologia, explaining issues regarding open access to content of taxonomic data, and to teach converting taxonomic publications into semantically enhanced documents that can be easily harvested and disseminated over the Internet. A special emphasis has been given to literature covering ants of the Neotropical region.

Plazi at TDWG, Montpellier, France, Nov 15, 2009

Guido Sautter will demonstrate at TDWG Plazi's newest asset, a community mark up server. The demo is titled "Plazi: Building Communities and Software for Increasing the Utility of Digitized Biodiversity Publications.

Species Profile Model project successfully concluded

In collaboration with Encyclopedia of Life (EOL) and GBIF, Plazi has developed a web service providing treatments in Species Profile Model (SPM) format allowing EOL and other interested parties to consume and automatically publish taxonomic treatments. More (Nov 5, 2009)

Plazi at the Iranian Research Institute of Plant Protection (IRIPP), Teheran, October 26, 2009

Donat Agosti is presenting and invited lecture on "New ways in e-publishing and e-communication" seen from the point of view of Plazi.

Plazi at ArtDatabanken Meeting Stockholm (Sept. 21-24)

Donat Agosti and Guido Sautter will be lecturing and teaching at the ArtDatabanken course. The course will focus on topics relevant to compiling, organizing, and contributing the digitized results of their research to community resources as well as further use of these data in their own studies. ArtDatabanken has underscored the importance of contributing research data to institutional natural history databases, Dynamisk Taxa/Artportalen, GBIF, Morphbank, and CBOL (Consortium for the Barcode of Life) in the contracts it issues for Svenska artprojektet funding. Success in accomplishing this is directly related to the skills and experience (and motivation) of individual researchers, who are certain to compile datasets during the duration of their work and would benefit from a better understanding of how these issues apply to their current (or upcoming) digitization protocols.

Plazi at the e-biosphere Conference in London (June 2, 2009)

Donat Agosti will participate on panel 6 at the e-biosphere conference discussing cultural challenges related to data sharing, open access and intellectual property right in the biodiversity community.

Plazi Partners With Encyclopedia of Life (EOL)

Encyclopedia of Life and Plazi partner in a pioneering work to provide access to taxonomic descriptions extracted from the published record. This collaboration includes application of the Species Page Model (SPM) RDF Vocabulary developed by Biodiversity Information Standards (TDWG) to facilitate exchange of descriptive data. EOL has begun harvesting data provided by Plazi for inclusion in species pages on their website.

Copyright Sexier than Sexual Intercourse

Plazi Board Members Donat Agosti and Willi Egloff's recent paper "Taxonomic information exchange and copyright: the Plazi approach" climbs to #2 on BMC Research Notes: Most viewed articles in past 30 days list, edging out "Factors associated with self-reported first sexual intercourse in Scottish adolescents"
Post script: Our joy did not last into 2010. The old wisdom is the old wisdom... BUT: we still have the great pleasure to find our paper on position 8 of 260 most accessed published papers in BMC Research Notes for 2010.

Forthcoming Meetings

March 3-7, 2010
Plazi General Assembly
Staatliches Museum für Naturkunde, Karlsruhe, Germany.

Past Meetings

January 4-5, 2010
Enhanced Taxonomic Publications Meeting
National Libraries of Medicine

November 17-21, 2009
XIX Simpòsio de Mirmecologia
Ouro Preto, Brazil
lectures and training course
Christiana Klingenberg, Donat Agosti

June 22-23, 2009
Scientific publishing in natural history institutions (EDIT)
Willi Egloff (invited speaker)

June 1 - 3, 2009
E-biosphere Conference London
Donat Agosti (invited panelist)

May 23, 2009
Nomina Meeting
Woods Hole
Guido Sautter

December 9, 2008
CNI Washington DC
Terry Catapano, Donat Agosti

December 1, 2008
Swedish Biodiversity Informatics Symposium, Stockholm
Willi Egloff, Donat Agosti

October 30, 2008
Atlas of Living Australia, Canberra
Terry Catapano, Guido Sautter, Donat Agosti
Lectures and Demo of Plazi

October 27-29, 2008
Australian Museum, Sydney

October 19-25, 2008
TDWG Perth
Terry Catapano, Bob Morris, Guido Sautter, Rich Pyle and Donat Agosti participated at the TDWG conference in Perth, October 2008. The lectures and two tutorials have been contributed.