New categories for traditional medicine in the Economic Botany Data Collection Standard

J Ethnopharmacol. 2014 Sep 11;155(2):1388-92. doi: 10.1016/j.jep.2014.06.047. Epub 2014 Jun 24.


The Economic Botany Data Collection Standard (EBDCS) has been successfully followed by ethnobotanists investigating plant uses in many parts of the world. However, we have encountered some cases in our study of traditional medicine where the standard seems incomplete and inaccurate when it is applied to plant uses of rural or indigenous societies in developing countries. We propose two categories to be added to the EBDCS: Cultural Diseases and Disorders, and Ritual/Magical Uses. Adding these categories, we believe will give a more accurate insight into traditional medicine and will contribute to developing an integrative ethnomedicinal data collection protocol, which will make ethnomedicinal studies more comparable.

Keywords: Cultural diseases and disorders; Ethnobotany; Ethnomedicine; Medicinal plant classification; Ritual and magical uses; Traditional knowledge.

MeSH terms

  • Ceremonial Behavior
  • Cultural Characteristics
  • Ethnobotany / classification*
  • Ethnobotany / standards
  • Health Behavior / ethnology
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice / ethnology
  • Humans
  • Magic
  • Medicine, Traditional* / standards
  • Phytotherapy / classification*
  • Phytotherapy / standards
  • Plant Extracts / classification*
  • Plant Extracts / standards
  • Plant Extracts / therapeutic use
  • Plants, Medicinal / classification*
  • Terminology as Topic*


  • Plant Extracts