Uses of Primary Species-Occurrence Data


A booklet describing the uses of primary species-occurence data by Arthur D. Chapman. It is structured in chapters organised thematically, and it presents multiple online examples for the readers to consult.


This paper examines uses for primary species-occurrence data in research, education and in other areas of human endeavour, and provides examples for the literature of many of these uses. The paper examines not only data from labels, or from observational notes, but the data inherent in museum and herbarium collections themselves, which are long-term storage receptacles of information and data that are still largely untouched. Projects include the study of the species and their distributions through both time and space, their use for education, both formal and public, for conservation and scientific research, use in medicine and forensic studies, in natural resources management and climate change, in art, history and recreation, and for social and political use. Uses are many and varied and may well form the basis of much of what we do as people every day.


Arthur D. Chapman


GBIF Secretariat


Global Biodiversity Information Facility


Material in this publication is free to use, with proper attribution.

Rights holder

Global Biodiversity Information Facility


Chapman, A.D., 2005, Uses of Primary Species-Occurrence Data, version 1.0. Report for the Global Biodiversity Information Facility, Copenhagen. 100 pp. Available online at