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Hindu Kush Himalayan Biodiversity Information Facility

HKH-BIF

HKHBIF timeline journey

Sikkim fire tail sunbird

The 2018 GBIF Asia Regional Node meeting was organized by the GBIF secretariat, the Asia Regional Subcommittee of GBIF, participant nodes, ICIMOD, and the Ministry of Forests, and Environment, Government of Nepal, Kathmandu, on 17-18 September 2018.

Sameer Bajracharya from ICIMOD received a Biodiversity Data Mobilization Badge at the Basic Level from GBIF in 2019. This was presented for successful completion of the data mobilization capacity strengthening workshop organized by GBIF.

(link: https://www.gbif.org/dataset/f7fc8184-1ca5-4ff2-98a6-59aab751b5bb )

The publication is based on the herbarium specimens that have been deposited at the National Herbarium and Plant Laboratories (KATH) of the Department of Plant Resources, Ministry of Forests and Environment, Kathmandu, Nepal. The digitization and publication process of this database was supported by Biodiversity Information Fund for Asia (BIFA; project no. BIFA3_025) programme of Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) funded by Ministry of Environment, Government of Japan.

(link: https://www.gbif.org/dataset/95a336b6-e4f6-401d-9cbe-a4aef935d82b)

The publication is based on the herbarium specimens that have been deposited at the National Herbarium and Plant Laboratories (KATH) of the Department of Plant Resources, Ministry of Forest and Environment, Kathmandu, Nepal. The digitization and publication process of this database was supported by Biodiversity Information Fund for Asia (BIFA; project no. BIFA3_025) program of Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) funded by Ministry of Environment, Government of Japan.

The fifth round of funding from the Biodiversity Information Fund for Asia (BIFA) programme will support nine new projects in 2020, focusing on mobilizing biodiversity data from collections and ecological monitoring in the region. The BIFA programme is managed by the GBIF Secretariat and funded by the Ministry of the Environment, Government of Japan with the goal of filling data gaps and supporting biodiversity information capacity in Asia. Out of nine projects, four are from HKH countries: Enriching the Bhutan Biodiversity Portal through digitization and mobilization of specimen collections, mediated by Bhutan; Digitization of mycological collections in Nepal, mediated by Nepal; Mobilizing invertebrate monitoring data in South-East Asia and Cleaning and digitizing plant specimen records from Heilongjiang Province, China, mediated by China. The projects are all beginning in July , and will be implemented by the end of 2021. (Read more at: GBIF-BIFA Awards for 2020 – https://www.gbif.org/news/4ASoMt9mIxQ44Z8rPVOR7q/bifa-programme-awards-funding-to-nine-new-projects-in-asia)

The dataset and metadata of the Api Nampa Biodiversity Profile has been published on HKHBIF and GBIF: http://rds.icimod.org:8080/hkh-bif/resource?r=apinampa_biodiversity. A total of 940 species of flora (angiosperms, gymnosperms and pteridophytes) and fauna (birds and insects) have been uploaded.

The Api Nampa Conservation Area (ANCA) Biodiversity Profile is a government led document available both on HimalDoc (Link) as well as on the ANCA website (Link). ICIMOD and partners from Kailash Sacred Landscape (Link) provided technical support for the research and its publication.

A virtual meeting of node representatives from Asia, and GBIF Secretariat was held on 17 July 2020. The objective was to share progress from each node and upcoming plans for 2021, discuss how engagement and participation of Asian nodes can be strengthened, and update on regional engagement strategy for GBIF Asian nodes. GBIF participation in Asia is limited in terms of the number of participants. From the HKH region, the Chinese Academy of Sciences Biodiversity Information Facility (CAS-BIF), and Hindu Kush Himalayan Biodiversity Information Facility (HKH-BIF), from ICIMOD, Nepal participated. CAS-BIF is active in terms of publishing 14 datasets with 1.6 million records and data use is growing significantly in China. There are many new citations from Chinese literature, especially research on plants. Stable fund for biodiversity data mobilization, and continual engagement of data providers remain the most common challenges for all nodes.

A virtual meeting of node representatives from Asia, BIFA s and GBIF Secretariat was held on 20 July 2020. The objective was to bring Asian GBIF participants together to learn about activities of GBIF, and address the need for improved access to data on the rich biodiversity of the region. The meeting further discussed issues raised at the recently published 20-year review of GBIF. The review highlights expansion of participation and strengthening of existing nodes in Asia. Tim Hirsch, Deputy Director-GBIF introduced GBIF and highlighted the activities and plans of the nodes representing the Asian countries and the prospects of outreach to private sector for biodiversity data mobilization. Success stories and lessons from six 2019 BIFA grantees were shared. The Asia representative from JBIF (Japan Biodiversity Information Facility) presented an update of the collaborative Asian regional node, the evolution of a regional strategy and the need to revise regional strategy developed for 2013-2016.

GBIF organizes a data mobilization workshop every year to enable participants to plan and implement biodiversity data mobilization efforts effectively using community standards. This year, a data mobilization workshop was organized virtually (although it was planned to be held in Nepal) from 21-24 July. The participants included representatives from the Biodiversity Information Fund for Asia (BIFA-5) project teams and GBIF Asia Region participant nodes. They were mentored by candidates from the previous workshops, with the organizing team members serving as trainers. The real-time sessions were conducted over 4 days, with the course divided into three sections. Section I was a two-week self-paced foundation course designed to enable the participants understand about GBIF and associated communities, learn key concepts of biodiversity informatics, particular to biodiversity digital data management, and go through an introduction to the Darwin Core Standard and its components before the main session. Section II was a module designed for the virtual workshop that covered planning, data capture, data management and data publishing. The trainers and mentors guided the participants on the stages of planning a mobilization project; data capture, standardization, validation and cleaning using different software and tools; and the process of data publishing in GBIF using the GBIF’s Integrated Publishing Toolkit (IPT), with practice activities and use case exercises over the four-day session. Section III covered data publishing, using GBIF-mediated data and final assignments based on which participants were assessed and provided digital certification. Few representatives from HKH countries were the BIFA5 project participants: Shiva Devkota from Nepal, Akihiro Nakamura from China and Choki Gyeltshen from Bhutan, and lily Shrestha from ICIMOD.