Caption: Joint Nordic efforts will provide new solutions for biodiversity and ecosystem research. By providing better access to biodiversity and environmental data, LifeWatch can help us towards a better understanding species distribution and ecosystem functions in a changing world.
Photo: Anna Maria Wremp, Swedish LifeWatch, SLU.
Sweden was the first country to start the construction of national research infrastructure for biodiversity within the LifeWatch initiative, an effort coordinated by the Swedish Species Information Centre (ArtDatabanken) at the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU) and involving several major universities and institutions in Sweden. Similar initiatives are on their way in neighbouring countries.
A vast amount of public funded biodiversity data and environmental data are held by voluntary organizations, research institutions and environmental management institutions in the Nordic countries. Making such huge amounts of data freely available for the general public is today a global trend and also an essential strategy for improved scientific biodiversity and ecosystem research. By adding tools and workflows for analysis and modelling on top of interoperable databases, virtual laboratories can be created. This is exactly what LifeWatch is about: creating a European research infrastructure for biodiversity data.The Nordic LifeWatch collaboration was formally initiated during a start-up meeting in Stockholm 8-9 November 2012. The scope of the Nordic LifeWatch project will be to identify the scientific potential of a common Nordic infrastructure based on inventories of user needs, existing data repositories, and challenges/constraints related to data sharing in general. Based on these findings, strategies and a proposal will be developed for funding of a Nordic LifeWatch Construction phase in close collaboration with stakeholders (research councils, ministries, and scientific communities), national LW Consortiums, the European LifeWatch Service Center and relevant parallel initiatives. The preparatory project is funded by NordForsk.
Anna Maria Wremp, communications officer Swedish LifeWatch. Annafirstname.lastname@example.org, tel: +46 18 671394.
Anna Maria Wremp | idw
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