Project GBIF CESP: Filling taxonomic and geographic gaps in open data by strengthening skills of the Brazilian zoological collections network


Latest news

Calendar of webinars annouced

The webinar series calendar is already available. The monthly webinar will take place typically in the last week of the month. See here the calendar (in portuguese).


Brazil is home to one of the richest biodiversity in the world, with 49,993 plants (28%) and 119,640 animals (78%) species catalogued (Brazilian Flora 2020 and Taxonomic Catalog of the Brazilian Fauna). Consequently, a greater rate of animal records would be expected in the Brazilian Biodiversity Information System (SiBBr) considering the largest number of animal species. However, it is observed that the majority of data published consist of plant records. Actually, from the total number of about 16,5 million occurrence records, plants represent 51% and animals 47%, revealing a significant gap in the representativeness of animal records.

In Brazil, there is a strong community of taxonomists and the research on Neotropical zoology is recognized as one of the most prolific in the world. This fact is reflected directly in the diversity and quality of collections groups, including those considered rare. In order to reverse the low representativeness of animal occurrence records this project aims to strengthen Brazilian Zoological Collections providing common guidelines and enhance capacity in data management, with an increase of available records for data use.

The Brazilian Society of Zoology (SBZ) carried out a state-of-the-art survey of zoological collections. 20% of the collections that answered have no data or little digitized data and 40% is partially digitized therefore not all the information is available in national and international repositories. Moreover, specialists highlight the lack of communication, common guidelines and little knowledge and expertise of available management tools for collections.

The experience of the Node of Portugal, with courses on topics such as collection management tools (mainly SPECIFY), cleaning and data quality will help to create capacity in support of collections' management. This will include a training workshop will be held in June of 2022. The project and documentation carried out in Portuguese language encourages the participation of African nodes, generating future partnerships with these countries. The need for capacity enhancement is also high in Angola (GBIF Node), where the management of the largest herbaria and zoological collections, in two institutions of the country, is already being done using SPECIFY 6. However, a refresh on the database use and the component of data publishing is needed.

This project is aligned with GBIF Work Program priorities 1b, 1d, 1e, 2b, 2c, 3a, 4b.


Specific objectives are:

i) Promote the integration of curators of biological collections from Portuguese-speaking countries in the discussion and exchange of experiences on management, computerization and availability of information;

ii) Train curators and technicians on Specify;

iii) Encourage the qualification of the data made available.

Expected results and outputs


i) a series of monthly webinars, in portuguese, open to all community of collections curator. See webinar schedule and recordings.

ii) capacity building materials on management of zoological collections, in portuguese

iii) survey of state-of-the-art of zoological collections


€ 15,000


€ 50,197


1 Ago 2021 - 31 Jul 2022

Project identifier


Funded by

Capacity Enhancement Support Programme 


Co-funded by

SBZ Brazil - GBIF Brazil (SiBBr) - GBIF Portugal

Project leader

Associação Brasileira de Zoologia


GBIF Brasil (SiBBr), GBIF Angola, Universidade Eduardo Mondlane, Instituti de Engenharia e Ciências do Mar da Universidade Técnica do Atlântico (Cabo Verde), Direcção Geral do Ambiente de São Tomé e Príncipe


Luciane Marinoni

Brazilian Society of Zoology (Associação Brasileira de Zoologia)

Av. Coronel Francisco Heráclito dos Santos, 210, Jardim das Américas

Cx. Postal 19020

ZipCode 81.531-980 Curitiba, Paraná