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Mission

The mission of the INCT Virtual Herbarium of Plants and Fungi is to provide to society in general, public authorities, and especially the scientific community, a high quality, open [botanical collections] data infrastructure accessible to the public.  This will integrate the data held in Brazil’s herbaria and will repatriate data of collections made on Brazilian soil and held in foreign herbaria.

Objectives

  • Make free, open, and easy data sharing of non-sensitive herbarium data a fundamental principle of scientific conduct;
  • Improve the quality of the collections held in Brazilian herbaria;
  • Make data on species occurrence in Brazil a fundamental basis for decision-making and formulation of public policy on biodiversity [and conservation];
  • Augment the base of knowledge of diversity of plants and macroscopic fungi of Brazil;
  • Stimulate the development of public policy leading to the sustainability of herbaria, the training of taxonomists, and studies of biological diversity; and

Provide basic data so that environmental sustainability becomes a criterion as important as social and economic development in the analysis and formulation of public policy.

Principal Activities

The principal activities of the Institute will be focused on: research, training, and the transfer of knowledge to society

Research. The Institute will have two basic lines of research: (1) Biological diversity and taxonomy of plants and fungi, and (2) Use of data on species distributions for the formulation of public policy on plant and fungal diversity.

Training.  A program of courses on advanced taxonomic techniques, training of herbarium curators and technicians in biodiversity informatics will make possible higher quality of collections in Brazil and increased digitization and distribution of data.

Transfer of Knowledge to Society.  The identification of a specimen and its sharing in a free and open system is part of the fundamental strategy of transferring taxonomic knowledge to society.  It is taxonomic knowledge, represented by scientific names, that makes possible the dynamic integration of data and knowledge held in different collections, and the generation of information that can enrich the analyses of specialists in diverse areas such as the environment, health, agriculture and industry.

Coordination

Leonor Costa Maia/UFPE
Department of Mycology
Center for Biological Sciences
Federal University of Pernambuco
Av. Prof. Nelson Chaves, s/n
Cidade Universitária
50670-420 Recife/PE
Phone/fax: +55-81-21268865
Email: inct @ florabrasil . net

Vice-Coordination: Maria Regina Barbosa/UFPB

Steering Committee

  • Leonor Costa Maia (UFPE)
  • Maria Regina Barbosa (UFPB)
  • Ariane Luna Peixoto (JBRJ)
  • Mariângela Menezes (MNRJ)
  • João Renato Stehmann (UFMG)
  • Ana Odete Santos Vieira (UEL)

Area Coordinators

José Rubens Pirani – USP (phanerogams taxonomy)
Kátia Cavalcanti Pôrto – UFPE (cryptogams taxonomy)
Ariane Luna Peixoto – JBRJ (formation of human resources)
Ana Odete Santos Vieira – UEL (herbaria articulation)
Maria Regina Barbosa – UFPB (research of products)
Dora Ann Lange Canhos – CRIA (on-line system of information and research of products)