The Access to Biological Collections Data (ABCD) Schema is an evolving comprehensive standard for the access to and exchange of data about specimens and observations (a.k.a. primary biodiversity data). The ABCD Schema attempts to be comprehensive and highly structured, supporting data from a wide variety of databases. It is compatible with several existing data standards. Parallel structures exist so that either (or both) atomised data and free-text can be accommodated.
The ABCD Schema was ratified as a standard by the Biodiversity Information Standards Taxonomic Databases Working Group (TDWG) in 2005. It was developed as a community-driven effort, with contributions from CODATA, BioCASE and GBIF among other organizations.
A body of standards, including a glossary of terms (in other contexts these might be called properties, elements, fields, columns, attributes, or concepts) intended to facilitate the sharing of information about biological diversity by providing reference definitions, examples, and commentaries.
Sponsored by Biodiversity Information Standards (TWDG), the current standard was last modified in October 2009.
Ecological Metadata Language (EML) is a metadata specification particularly developed for the ecology discipline. It is based on prior work done by the Ecological Society of America and associated efforts (Michener et al., 1997, Ecological Applications).
Sponsored by ecoinformatics.org, EML Version 2.2.0 was released in 2019.
Darwin Core documentation and recommendations for herbaria.
An extension to the Darwin Core standard, it includes additional terms required to describe plant genetic resources and in particular germplasm seed samples.
Established by a global network of countries and organizations, GBIF is a web portal promoting and facilitating the mobilization, access, discovery and use of biodiversity data. The portal uses a profile of EML; a How-to Guide and Reference Guide for using the profile are available.
An extension to ABCD 2.06, it is designed to allow the storage and transmission of herbarium plant specimen data.
A web application that offers data publishers wishing to serve to the GBIF network an easy interface for describing data elements as basic text files, composing an appropriate XML Darwin Core descriptor file to accompany them.
A tool to validate XML metadata against the Darwin Core Text Guidelines.
An aggregation of information on all the known species in Australia, collected from museums, herbaria, community groups, government departments, individuals and universities. All data is converted to Darwin Core.
The BioCASE Biological Unit Network provides access to a transnational network of biological collections; its protocol requires providers to use the ABCD schema in their configuration files.
Established by a global network of countries and organizations, GBIF is a web portal promoting and facilitating the mobilization, access, discovery and use of biodiversity data. The preferred format for publishing data to the GBIF network is the Darwin Core Archive, and its Integrated Publishing Toolkit uses EML as its data standard.
A web portal using Darwin Core to describe biodiversity data collected in Madagascar.