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You are here: Home / Library / RBINS Staff Publications 2021 / Abc Taxa: series of peer-reviewed manuals dedicated to capacity building in taxonomy & collection management

Jennifer Olbers, Didier Van Den Spiegel, Jerome Degreef, and Yves Samyn (2021)

Abc Taxa: series of peer-reviewed manuals dedicated to capacity building in taxonomy & collection management

In: Abstract book - International Congress of Zoology (virtual congress, 22-24 November 2021), pp. 56.

Today, the so-called taxonomic impediment, i.e., the lack of taxonomic (inclusive of genetic) information, taxonomic and curatorial expertise, and infrastructure in many parts of the world, means that accessing and generating taxonomic information remains extremely difficult. To alter this trend, the Convention on Biological Diversity installed the Global Taxonomy Initiative (GTI) and endorsed it with an operational program of work. Its objectives are to remedy the knowledge gaps in our taxonomic system, increase the number of well-trained taxonomists and curators, optimize the infrastructure needed to do sound taxonomic research, significantly improve access to taxonomic collections, data, and metadata, and, thereby, to improve decision- making in conservation of biodiversity. To speed up taxonomic capacity building the Belgian GTI Focal Point has established the series Abc Taxa (, a toll-free information highway between experts and novices. It is believed that this artery will speed up the construction of taxonomic capacity, as it does not evoke the expensive, long-term teacher-apprentice relationships previously utilized to install operational, high-quality taxonomists and collection managers. Since 2005, 19 volumes have been released with subjects as diverse as taxonomy of sea cucumbers of the Comoros, good practices in collection management of mollusc collections, taxonomy of the amphibians of Cuba and of Guyana, taxonomy of algae of Sri Lanka, bee taxonomy in sub-Saharan Africa, mushroom taxonomy of Central Africa, introduction to the taxonomy of mites, taxonomy of invasive succulents of South Africa, taxonomy of the sawflies of southern Africa, taxonomy of the diatoms of the Congo, taxonomy of fish parasites of African Freshwater fishes and taxonomy of the brittle and basket stars of South Africa. This contribution briefly details the scope and aims of Abc Taxa, demonstrates the value of the series for development, and acts as a call for future manuscripts.
Peer Review, Open Access, PDF available, Abstract of an Oral Presentation or a Poster

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