Establishing the Foundation for Long-Term Curation and Management of Historical and Unique Biological Collections
Fisheries and Oceans Canada provided $50,000 from the Partnership Fund to help establish the Foundation for Long-Term Curation and Management of Historical and Unique Biological Collections. Biological collections are the libraries of life, providing scientists with a way to record and store samples of living organisms for research. Such collections form a critical foundation for wide-ranging research on the oceans and marine life, which are increasingly important in the face of climate change and rapidly changing ecosystems.
To make the most effective use of biological collections across Canada, it is essential to have a standardized system for data collection, input, storage, and access. This initiative will implement free curatorial management software called Specify, which is widely used for collection management by many institutions around the world, including the Atlantic Reference Centre (ARC) in St. Andrews, New Brunswick. Implementation of the software will ensure the long-term viability of biological collections at the national level, using ARC facilities and expertise, and enhance Canada's capacity for the preservation of important scientific material, information access, and research.
This initiative provides a standardized database set up, a method of collection digitization, and a management structure for the biological collections. The work involves:
- Preparing ARC to receive new collections and consolidating existing ARC collections;
- Providing a Specify software training workshop for ARC staff and access to the software at all collection sites;
- Producing guidelines on collection data standards, including required metadata and quality assurance procedures.
Project number: CA2016.25
Partner: Huntsman Marine Science Centre
Principal Investigator: Claire Goodwin
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