Under contract from the Heritage Council and the Department of Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural & Gaeltacht Affairs, Compass Informatics established the National Biodiversity Data Centre for Ireland. We also operate the Centre under a service level agreement. The Centre is fully staffed by Compass personnel who undertake all ecology, outreach, data management and systems development projects.
The National Biodiversity Data Centre is a national organisation that collates, manages and analyses and disseminates data on Ireland’s biodiversity. Since 2006 the Centre has gone from strength to strength arising from its excellent team, its many great partners and contributors, and the support of its funding organisations through thick and thin.
Biodiversity data are a key requirement for understanding our natural surroundings, for tracking change in our environment and for gaining a greater insight to how we benefit from, and impact upon, the ecosystem goods and services provided by biological diversity; a national asset which contributes at least €2.6 billion to the Irish economy each year.
The National Biodiversity Data Centre is the national hub for biodiversity data and information in Ireland. At its core is an information resource comprising a knowledge base, national datasets, and Biodiversity Maps, the Centre’s mapping and data discovery portal from which data can be searched and retrieved. The centre makes extensive use of informatics and the Compass Biodiversity Information System.Much of our biodiversity data resides in archives, museums and libraries. The development of digitised datasets that are instantly accessible via the Web helps mobilise that data, allowing its use in a wide range of innovative applications while aiding conservation initiatives. The Web-based mapping and data management system provides a cost effective method of disseminating this data and brings significant added value to existing survey information.
Read the case study here in GEO:connexion, or the profile prepared by Esri to highlight the Centre as an example of best practice.
Liam Lysaght, Centre Director of the National Biodiversity Data Centre, presented the Centre at the Compass12 Conference in Dublin in September 2012 – watch his presentation – “National Biodiversity Data Centre. A New Piece of Ireland’s Data Infrastructure” – here (links to YouTube).
Ireland became a member of the Global Biodiversity Information Facility in 2008, and the National Biodiversity Data Centre acts as the national node for Ireland. Ireland’s membership of this international organisation complements the Centre’s strategic objective of making biodiversity information freely and universally available through web services.