IUBS General Assembly 2007

Education for Sustainability

1:30 PM

Data Enriched Sustainability
in a Megabiodiverse World:
Challenges and Potentials


Conservation and sustainable utilization of biotic resources calls for access to authentic, appropriate, accurate, up-to-date, and sufficient data and information related to various aspects associated and impacting them. However, in a mega-biodiversity world, most of which is either developing or under-developed, it is often observed that conservation efforts, as well sustainable use of biotic resources is often ignored. One of the major reason for this, I believe is un-accessibility to data and information. This is contrary to fact that wealth of data is available on various aspects of these mega-biodiversity ecosystems. However, they being distributed isolated and in non-interoperable formats, make it impossible for its stakeholders to access it, when
it is most needed.

In my presentation, I will be discussing major challenges in ensuring access to data about biotic resources, one of them being absence of infrastructure that could facilitate efficient collation of data and its analysis. In addition, in mega-biodiversity world, data management is not treated as scientific activity, and thus often gets least priority. However, current political and scientific advancements unfolds great potentials to undertake informatics activities in collating and disseminating this vast data and information, which can lead to sustainable utilization of the biotic resources. I shall attempt to put forth these potentials with the help of experience of leading biodiversity and eco-informatics activities in mega-biodiversity and developing nation like India. It is my belief that biodiversity information management would contribute towards economic growth, ecological sustainability, and social outcomes through increasing the utility, availability and completeness of new and existing biodiversit y and ecosystem information resources.