Ecolynx Project: Information Context for Biodiversity Conservation

Data sources and ownership

The information content for the envisaged product/service is owned by, or freely available to, two of the project partners: WCMC and UIA. The datasets in question have been generated, and are maintained on a more or less continual basis, by the respective organization partners. The core creators of the information are research scientists involved in the fields of species, habitat or ecosystem conservation, or they are researchers involved with the study of global networks and associative activity for environmental conservation; they are also the information and policy arms of organizations and institutions working in these fields.

Parts of the information in the partners’ databases are already available in a variety of forms, some in the public domain. In both cases, the partners add value to the data by standardisation of presentation, quality control, regular updates, and especially by integration into a broader navigable framework. In this sense, the partners do not so much own the data elements as the hypertext structures linking those elements.

It is crucial for the partners to maintain their relationships of trust with their information partners. It is also highly desirable that such partners are involved with the development of this new information product. To this end, WCMC is already in dialogue with certain partners for whom it acts as an information agency and is likely to have specific direct interests in this INFO2000 initiative. The UIA is also intending to inform the 20,000 or so international organizations with which it has annual contact of this project, seeking to elicit support in-kind – in the form of information materials and linkages, and user tests and reviews of the product as it develops.