F. De Leo
- Towards global interoperability for supporting biodiversity research on Essential Biodiversity Variables (EBVs)
- Volume | Issue number
- 16 | 2-3
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Science (FNWI)
- Institute for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Dynamics (IBED)
Essential biodiversity variables (EBVs) have been proposed by the Group on Earth Observations Biodiversity Observation Network (GEO BON) to identify a minimum set of essential measurements that are required for studying, monitoring and reporting biodiversity and ecosystem change. Despite the initial conceptualisation, however, the practical implementation of EBVs remains challenging. There is much discussion about the concept and implementation of EBVs: which variables are meaningful; which data are needed and available; at which spatial, temporal and topical scales can EBVs be calculated; and how sensitive are EBVs to variations in underlying data? To advance scientific progress in implementing EBVs we propose that both scientists and research infrastructure operators need to cooperate globally to serve and process the essential large datasets for calculating EBVs. We introduce GLOBIS-B (GLOBal Infrastructures for Supporting Biodiversity research), a global cooperation funded by the Horizon 2020 research and innovation framework programme of the European Commission. The main aim of GLOBIS-B is to bring together biodiversity scientists, global research infrastructure operators and legal interoperability experts to identify the research needs and infrastructure services underpinning the concept of EBVs. The project will facilitate the multi-lateral cooperation of biodiversity research infrastructures worldwide and identify the required primary data, analysis tools, methodologies and legal and technical bottlenecks to develop an agenda for research and infrastructure development to compute EBVs. This requires development of standards, protocols and workflows that are ‘self-documenting’ and openly shared to allow the discovery and analysis of data across large spatial extents and different temporal resolutions. The interoperability of existing biodiversity research infrastructures will be crucial for integrating the necessary biodiversity data to calculate EBVs, and to advance our ability to assess progress towards the Aichi targets for 2020 of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD).
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