The Global Biodiversity Facility GBIF is an inter-governmental organization borned in 2001 that currently comprises 53 governments and 43 international organizations. GBIF is a network of national nodes with an international mandate settled in Copenhagen. The main goal of GBIF is to provide free and open online access to global biodiversity data supporting at the same time scientific research, conservation and sustainable development.
GBIF has its origin in 1996, when an OECD
working group called "Mega Science Forum Working Group"
started to launch scientific initiatives of fundamental interest,
but which were not viable for any country due to its extent.
In this forum the concept of GBIF arose with the idea
of applying informatics to manage information derived from
nature. GBIF was constituted formally in 2001.
In the 17th Meeting of the Governing Board of (GBIF) that took place in October 2010 in Suwon (Korea), it was approved a new, open-ended Memorandum of Understanding (to be signed by all GBIF Participants from 2012) and a budget for the organisation covering the period 2012 – 2016. Delegations furthermore unanimously adopted the GBIF Suwon Declaration that underlines the importance of the GBIF network to governments and its relevance to science, conservation and sustainability.
Nowadays, GBIF priorities are focused on species and specimen-level
data and within this level, the collections are its first
priority. The four working programmes of GBIF going on at the moment are:
- Data access
and data base interoperability - DADI.
- Electronic catalogue of names of Known Organisms - ECAT.
- Digitization of nature history collections - DIGIT.
- Outreach and
capacity building - OCB.
GBIF is evolving into an interoperable network of biodiversity
databases, aiming to be a basic tool for the scientific development
of any country and will contribute in a significant way to
better protection and use of global biodiversity.
GBIF in Spain...