Areas of Emphasis
The FLMNH's new programmatic emphasis on biodiversity informatics is creating unprecedented opportunities for capturing, synthesizing, and distributing biodiversity information to address fundamental questions about the nature of biodiversity conservation. Examples include:
- Integrated Information Management: Modern collections include not only specimens and publications, but varied preparations, genetic samples, DNA sequences, images, videos, and audio data. Developing tools for seamless, integrated access across such data is one of the highest priorities in biodiversity informatics, needing concerted effort and leadership.
- Biodiversity Portal: Digital Florida is an example of how data are being integrated at FLMNH to provide access to taxonomic and geospatial biodiversity information. Data from a variety of sources can produce similar results for any taxon or region, but information first must be assimilated and validated.The Institute will analyze biodiversity data from publications, databases, and other sources using tools from informatics, information management, and computer science to provide synthesized information for a host of applications including climate research, invasive species management, natural resource management, and public policy development.
- Information Synthesis and Transfer: The Institute will work with a diverse range of collaborators at UF to make the summaries, opinions, and policy recommendations useful to a broad array of clients. Clients will include scholars, agencies, and organizations interested in ecosystem processes, global environmental change, and natural resource management, protection, and sustainability, as well as foundations and organizations interested in accelerating the discovery and understanding of biodiversity. The Institute will partner with other national and international activities in ecology, evolution, bioinformatics, and resource management, including NEON (National Ecological Observatory Network), GBIF (Global Biodiversity Information Facility), PaleoPortal and CHRONOS (interactive networks of data and tools for Earth System History), EOL (Encyclopedia of Life), and AToL (Tree of Life), to accelerate development of information and effective results.