[Taxacom] a Standard for Taxonomic Verification Qualifiers

taxacom2 at achapman.org taxacom2 at achapman.org
Thu Jun 15 18:25:58 CDT 2006

I am currently examing the possibility of establishing a TDWG Standard for Taxonomic Verification Qualifiers and am seeking information from anyone currently using such qualifiers.  If you are using one (or have suggestions for one), I would appreciate a copy, which can be sent to me off-line.

Later, I hope that we can start a WIKI discussion on the tdwg Web site (http://www.tdwg.org), and a presentation is proposed for the TDWG meeting in St Louis in October.

I am currently aware of three standards that are in use 
(see attached file):

1. from Herbarium Information Standards and Protocols for the Interchange of Data (HISPID) Vers. 3 

2. A similar one based on this and used by the Botanic Gardens community
International Transfer Format for Botanic Gardens Plant Records (ITF) Vers. 2.0 

3. One used by the Australian National Fish Collection

In the Data Quality Document I prepared for GBIF lat year, I suggested a two level standard that I would like to see some discussion on. I believe that none are entirely suitable, and possibly an incorporation of all four would be the best.

Chapman A.D. (2005). Principles of Data Quality. Report for the Global Biodiversity Information Facility 2005. 61pp. Copenhagen: GBIF. 

The reasons for such a standard I see as

1. The need for improved documentation of quality with the increasing distribution of primary species data
2. The introduction of privacy legislation in many countries that is beginning to restrict the distribution of people's names, including the names of determiners of specimens.  If we cannot exchange the name of the determiner, we need some other method to reliably document the confidence we have in the identification.

I look forward to your responses.


Arthur D. Chapman
Australian Biodiversity Information Services
Toowoomba, Australia

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