GBIF Spain
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The Spanish GBIF Node is called "GBIF-España" or simply GBIF.ES. In February 2001, the Spanish Ministry of Science and Technology signed the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). Thus, Spain became a member and voting participant of GBIF.

Spain is a founding member of GBIF. The Ministry of Science and Technology (now Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness) commissioned the Spanish High Council of Research (CSIC) -by means of the Government Official Journal (BOE)- to initiate and coordinate the activities of GBIF in Spain. The CSIC, with support and advice of the Museo Nacional de Ciencias Naturales and the Real Jardín Botánico established the Coordination Unit, located at the Real Jardín Botánico since June 2003.

The Coordination Unit of GBIF or the Spanish Node of GBIF ( is organized as a distributed infrastructure. A total of 69 Spanish institutions (centers, research institutes, universities, environmental governments, etc...) from all regions are currently part of GBIF. Spain currently shares through the GBIF network over 9 million records of biodiversity under a common standard, including quality control procedures and mechanisms for evaluation and data reuse (metadata , APIs, search engines, etc...).

Spain is ahead of other European countries in the consumption of biodiversity data, as it is evidenced by usage statistics recently published by GBIF. In the global context, Spain was the country with the largest number of visits to the GBIF data portal in 2013 (44,000) just after U.S. (129,889) and Mexico (52,500). The high usage made of the GBIF infrastructure in our country indicates that the level of user loyalty is increasing as well as its value for biodiversity research in Spain.

 The Coordination Unit

The main mission of the Coordination Unit is to support natural history collections, institutes and relevant biodiversity projects in order to gain their participation by...

  • Supplying them with technical support, information, training, standards, software and advice.
  • Providing coherence between national initiatives and the GBIF information architecture in order to assure interoperability
  • Analyzing how to maximize the data value by developing tools for data analysis, validation and visualization.
  • Compiling and distributing relevant information to the benefit of collections as well as to our knowledge of biodiversity and its management.
  • Coordinating the activities of the institutes and international initiatives.

It is regarded as fundamental that all institutes in possession of biodiversity data participate in the GBIF initiative in Spain.

The information contained in each collection -regardless of its size- is unique. By participating in GBIF, the institutes and collections will contribute biodiversity data to GBIF at all scales, gaining technical support, visibility and recognition.

The institutes and projects involved may obtain funding. More information on funding in Spain...

From a functional point of view, the node can be regarded as a distributed system of data bases offering data access. There will be no great centralized data base to which every collection contributes. Instead, each collection creates, maintains and manages its own data base and thus controls what information is made accessible (or not) via Internet.

In addition to this federation of databases there will be a system in charge of gathering the query results from all connected nodes and of presenting them in a coherent manner, which is similar to Internet browsers such as Google. This network may be symmetrical in the sense that all the participating institutes are at the same time access points to the entire information.

The advantages of such a system are that data providers maintain control over their data, updates are made automatically and data origin and authorship are obvious.

 Documents and information related to GBIF implementation in Spain
  • Brochure of GBIF.ES (PDF - in Spanish).  
  • Proposal and Action Plan of the Spanish node of GBIF with details on concept, objetives and plan of action. Various aspects have changed since that notice (reduction in personnel and funding, etc.) but it is still representative of what is being implemented.  
  • Spanish GBIF portals: site with a detailed list of the different portals related to the Spanish GBIF initiative such as the communication portal, data portal, Species data portal, etc.
  • GBIF Fact Sheet (PDF).
 Links to GBIF.ES
If you would be so kind to link GBIF Spain web site from your web pages, you may follow the instructions provided here.

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GBIF-ES is the Spanish node of the Global Biodiversity Information Facility
sponsored by the Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness, managed
by the Spanish National Research Council throught its
Royal Botanical Garden-CSIC
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