[Taxacom] Moorea barcode project

Richard Jensen rjensen at saintmarys.edu
Wed Dec 12 13:02:48 CST 2007

I understand Doug's point, but have to ask, Are funding agencies so 
poorly endowed with expertise that they really do believe an "all 
species" inventory is possible in the normal (3-5 years) funding 
time-frame? Surely no one really believes this inventory will be 
completed in three years.

Dick J

Richard Jensen, Professor
Department of Biology
Saint Mary’s College
Notre Dame, IN 46556
Tel: 574-284-4674

Doug Yanega wrote:
> Chris Thompson wrote:
>> Yes, we need to take what we can get, be thankful, and then try our best
>> to do it all.
> I wasn't disputing that or implying otherwise - what I was 
> questioning is whether, after hearing claims from all sorts of 
> different biodiversity projects that promise to 
> inventory/sample/database "all species" but then can't complete the 
> arthropod portion of the project (about 90% or more of the actual 
> biodiversity), won't funding agencies start looking with a jaundiced 
> eye at future projects making similar promises, and either not fund 
> them, or fund only those that do NOT include arthropods? Are we 
> better served by promising more than we can deliver and doing the 
> best we can (and falling short), or would we be better off being 
> honest about the limitations, and then delivering exactly what was 
> promised? We work just as hard, and get the same results in either 
> case, but in the latter, those results are a better match to what we 
> promised beforehand. Or is it true that we have to make big promises 
> in order to get any funds at all?
> My concern, as someone who works on arthropods, and is often involved 
> in inventory and sampling projects, is that I'd like to see funding 
> opportunities increase in frequency and magnitude, and see a lot more 
> arthropod taxonomists being hired and supported (heck, the list of 
> insect families occurring in North America which have no living 
> taxonomists anywhere in the world is as long as your arm, and I'll 
> bet it's worse for arachnids, percentage-wise). Which approach, 
> realistically, is going to better advance the survival and growth of 
> arthropod taxonomy? If one biodiversity project after another gets 
> crippled by the arthropod taxonomic impediment, will that lead to 
> MORE funding for arthropod taxonomy (to remove the impediment), or 
> just drive people to bypass it altogether?
> Peace,

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