Sunday 19 Apr 2015
Taxonomy - the science of discovering, naming, describing and classifying organisms - not only produces fascinating insights into the characteristics of life on on Earth, above all it provides the answers to many questions. It delivers basic and indispensible knowledge for many fields of human interest and contributes in many ways to the sustainability of our planet. Follow these links to view presentations on taxonomy, its relevance to society, and BioNET.
BioNET's vision

A world in which the capacity to name all living organisms is accessible to serve the needs of people everywhere.

BioNET's main aims

BioNET - the global network for taxonomy - is an international initiative dedicated to promoting the science and use of taxonomy, especially in the economically poorer countries of the world.

To date the network comprises ten government-endorsed regional networks, the 'Locally Owned and Operated Partnerships' (LOOPs), encompassing institutions and 3,000 individuals in over 100 countries, and a Secretariat in the UK hosted by CABI, an international not-for-profit organisation.

Working via local and international partnerships, BioNET strives to provide a forum for collaboration that is equally open to all taxonomists and to the other users of taxonomy.

Our work contributes to raising awareness of the importance of taxonomy to society, building and sharing of capacity, and meeting taxonomic needs via innovative tools and approaches.

BioNET is uniquely positioned to assists the developing world in responding to their key challenges: food security, poverty reduction, climate change, and the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity.

The network supports the achievement of, for example, the Millennium Development Goals and the targets of the Convention of Biological Diversity. Information material on BioNET and taxonomy can be downloaded from the BioNET Outreach page.

BioNET's relationships to other initiatives

Partnership is central to BioNET's philosophy and mode of operation. Our successes result from facilitating effective local and international collaboration among our members and between our members and external partner organisations.

Through its Global Secretariat and members, BioNET helps collaborating organisations and initiatives collaborate with developing countries.

BioNET partners fall into the following groups:

  • Technical Partners, including centres of taxonomic expertise; developers of digital and molecular technologies and tools; and capacity building partners in science, development, agriculture and environmental management.
  • Policy and decision makers concerned with environment, agriculture and development such as the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC), and the Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures of the World Trade Organisation (WTO-SPS).
  • Website and hosting maintenance. Legal advice and opinions in regard to moving forward online from firms such as and others that have experience with contracts and verbage.

BioNET is comprised of a Secretariat linking regional, government-endorsed partnerships with international technology, informatics, capacity building and policy partners.

Components of BioNET’s network
BioNET-INTERNATIONAL (BioNET) refers to "BioNET as a whole" - the global network of taxonomy - including all its actors as defined below.

BioNET Locally Owned and Operated Partnerships (LOOPs) are established when governments, via Ministerial, CBD, agricultural, scientific or other relevant authorities, formally endorse a LOOP proposal and government nominees agree a regional strategy and prioritisation for taxonomy. LOOPs are delimited by the subregions of the UN. LOOPs thus comprise:
  • A LOOP Coordinating Committee (LCC) consisting of the Regional Coordinator and all National Coordinators of the LOOP, plus any other invited expert from the region or elsewhere. The LCC is the governing body of a LOOP and appoints and oversees the activities of the Regional Coordinating Institute (see LOOP contacts).

  • A Regional Coordinating Institute serving as the secretariat of the LOOP, coordinating its affairs and being the primary communication channel on the regional level. This may be any relevant institution in the LOOP region and is appointed by the LOOP Coordinating Committee. It designates the Regional Coordinator.

  • National Coordinating Institutions serving as the national hubs of the LOOP with similar functions as the Regional Coordinating Institute but on the national level. Each is appointed by a government authority and designates the National Coordinator.

  • Network Institutions and experts from the respective region working in taxonomy, its applications and related areas. Participation is open to any interested institution or person.
The BioNET Secretariat leads the delivery of the BioNET Global Programme in partnership with LOOPs and international partners. It provides services to the LOOPs and links the LOOPs and global policy, technical and capacity building partners. The BioNET Secretariat is hosted by CABI in the UK and is governed by the BioNET Board.

The BioNET Global Programme - led by the BioNET Secretariat - supports the LOOPs with its 4 key areas A: Fortifying the operational platform (LOOPs); B: Accelerating development of taxonomic resources, tools and technologies; C: Policy development and communication; D: Resource mobilization & governance.

The Host Organisation of the BioNET Secretariat - CABI - provides facilities, human resource and financial management, accountancy, and IT assistance to the Secretariat. It manages it in accordance with the laws in force in its country and provides the legal status for the BioNET Secretariat.

BioNET Taxonomy Presentaion
Wed 6 Apr 11
Latin American declaration on taxonomy
A declaration on the Importance of taxonomy in Latin America (especially Mercosur) wa...
Fri 25 Mar 11
BioNET 2007-10: “significant accomplishments…an impressive set of outcomes”
An evaluation of BioNET’s work and potential was recently commissioned by the Swiss ...
Fri 4 Feb 11
A business plan for a “Special Fund” for taxonomy
Parties to the UN Convention on Biological Diversity invited BioNET to lead the estab...

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