Sunday 26 Aug 2012

A 'Special Fund' for taxonomy
Through the UN Convention on Biological Diversity, governments of the world have recognised the vital importance of taxonomic science in our changing world and the imperative of building capacity, particularly in developing countries. Parties to the Convention have asked for a 'Special Fund' to be established to address the need for long-term sustainable funding of human and institutional capacities and to mainstream the use of novel practices in taxonomy. Since 2006, BioNET has led the planning and concept development of the 'Special Fund' project with the support of an international Interim Steering Committee. The Concept Phase was financially supported principally by the EC.

Invitation to partners
The results and conclusions of the Planning (2006 - 2008) and Concept Phase (2008 - 2010) are summarised in various documents provided here. For the next, Preparatory Phase we invite interested partners to support this project financially or in-kind. Please contact the BioNET Secretariat for more information.

The Fund will provide a financial mechanism to catalyse sustainable support for taxonomy in the future and deliver the knowledge base needed to achieve the anticipated Rio+20 goals, advancing sciences, industries (e.g. agriculture, health), policy and society. The purpose of the Fund will be to strengthen both the delivery of demand-driven taxonomic outputs as well as the taxonomic science base needed to address existing knowledge gaps in taxonomy. It aims to increase taxonomic capacity and productivity particularly in the less developed world, prioritize taxonomic activities according to agreed agendas in order to allocate resources effectively, and enhance the sustainability of taxonomic efforts.

The outcome will be a strengthened taxonomy that can adequately support

  • sciences such as geospatial research (based on observations of species occurrence), ecological studies, physiology, medicine, etc.
  • a wide range of biodiversity issues (e.g., management of ecosystems and protected areas, invasive alien species, monitoring and responses to climate change, etc.) and their implications for sustaining ecosystem services,
  • agricultural productivity, food security and poverty reduction through improved plant and animal health and stored product management,
  • policy decision making and the development of regional and national agendas,
  • the identification of opportunities and risks for the business sector.


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