Follow Compass at GIS Ireland 2012 on 11 October

Dr Liam Lysaght, Director of the National Biodiversity Data Centre and Mr Gearóid O Riain, Managing Director of Compass Informatics (who operate the Data Centre under contract to the Heritage Council), will be at GIS Ireland 2012 on 11 October, with their presentation “National Biodiversity Data Centre: An Update on a Key National Data Infrastructure”

The provision of data and information on Ireland’s biological resource is the key task of the National Biodiversity Data Centre. Data on Ireland’s biological resource is needed for many purposes, including documenting our natural capital, tracking change in our environment, informing public policy development, and managing alterations in land use. A great deal of information on Ireland’s biological diversity has been and is collected for a variety of different uses. What has been missing heretofore has been a framework to ensure that these data are stored securely and made available to build a comprehensive knowledge base for Ireland.

The National Biodiversity Data Centre has built a national data management structure to enable existing and future biodiversity data to be brought together on a common platform to be archived, managed and presented through an online data portal, Biodiversity Maps. The compilation of databases and datasets, generated by both the private and public sectors, brings significant added value to all data holdings. It also builds a comprehensive national overview of Ireland’s biodiversity resources and enables tools to be developed to track national and local trends and to inform policy.

Building the infrastructure necessary for knowledge management on Ireland’s natural capital, a resource estimated to be worth at least €2.6 billion per annum to the Irish economy, is a significant example of the use of ICT and innovation to drive efficiencies in the sector and contribute in a meaningful way to building the smart economy.