The GBIF integrated publishing toolkit: facilitating the efficient publishing of biodiversity data on the internet

PLoS One. 2014 Aug 6;9(8):e102623. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0102623. eCollection 2014.

Abstract

The planet is experiencing an ongoing global biodiversity crisis. Measuring the magnitude and rate of change more effectively requires access to organized, easily discoverable, and digitally-formatted biodiversity data, both legacy and new, from across the globe. Assembling this coherent digital representation of biodiversity requires the integration of data that have historically been analog, dispersed, and heterogeneous. The Integrated Publishing Toolkit (IPT) is a software package developed to support biodiversity dataset publication in a common format. The IPT's two primary functions are to 1) encode existing species occurrence datasets and checklists, such as records from natural history collections or observations, in the Darwin Core standard to enhance interoperability of data, and 2) publish and archive data and metadata for broad use in a Darwin Core Archive, a set of files following a standard format. Here we discuss the key need for the IPT, how it has developed in response to community input, and how it continues to evolve to streamline and enhance the interoperability, discoverability, and mobilization of new data types beyond basic Darwin Core records. We close with a discussion how IPT has impacted the biodiversity research community, how it enhances data publishing in more traditional journal venues, along with new features implemented in the latest version of the IPT, and future plans for more enhancements.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Biodiversity*
  • Internet*
  • Publishing*
  • Software*

Grant support

All funding for the development and maintenance of the Integrated Publishing Toolkit was/is provided by the Global Biodiversity Information Facility Work Program. All contributions have been commissioned by GBIF. The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.