Call for data papers to fill gaps on freshwater species

GBIF and the Journal of Limnology announce collaborative effort to mobilize data on species that inhabit or depend on the world's inland waters
DEADLINE: 22 Oct 2022

Daphnia galeata
Daphnia galeata Sars, 1864 observed in Russia by Ivan (CC BY-NC 4.0)

GBIF and the open-access Journal of Limnology have announced a call for researchers to submit data papers about species that inhabit the world's inland waters.

While freshwater environments cover less than one per cent of Earth's surface and contain less than three per cent of all water on the planet, they are home to at least 10 per cent of all species. Many freshwater macro- and microorganisms also serve as sentinels for the health of these ecosystems, which provide essential life-giving benefits to all species, even terrestrial ones like our own. Despite the severe threats freshwater biodiversity faces, understanding of and investments in its protection typically pales in comparison to those directed toward the terrestrial and marine realms.

To assist efforts to fill gaps in primary biodiversity data on freshwater species, GBIF will sponsor will the article processing charges—normally €624—for the first sixteen (16) manuscripts accepted by the Journal of Limnology to describe datasets:

The deadline for submissions is 22 October 2022.

See the complete definition of terms below.

""We are proud of this special issue dealing with datapapers on freshwater biodiversity in collaboration with GBIF," said Diego Fontaneto and Michela Rogora, editors in chief of the Journal of Limnology. "In an era of biodiversity loss and water scarcity, we hope that this call will reignite interest in inventories of freshwater biodiversity."

"GBIF and the Journal of Limnology share an interest in supporting research and policy agendas for freshwater biodiversity across all scales," said Joe Miller, GBIF executive secretary. "We're excited to work with them to increase coverage of species in the world's inland waters while building on previously successful data mobilization initiatives, like our recent calls for data on both vectors of human disease and soil biodiversity."

Detailed instructions

Authors must prepare the manuscript in English and submit it in accordance with the Journal of Limmology’s guide for authors by 22 October 2022.

Sponsorship is limited on a first-come, first-served basis to the first sixteen (16) accepted submissions to meet these criteria, so the call for submissions may close the stated deadline. Authors may contribute to more than one manuscript, but artificial division of the logically uniform data and data stories, or “salami publishing,” is not allowed.

The selected publications will appear in a special issue of the Journal of Limnology in late 2022 or early 2023. The Journal is indexed in both Web of Science (Impact Factor 1.673) and Scopus (CiteScore: 3.4).

Non-native speakers of English should ensure that their manuscripts are checked either by native speakers or by professional English-language editors prior to submission. You may credit these individuals as a “Contributor.” Contributors are not listed as co-authors but can help you improve your manuscripts. Poorly written submissions will be rejected prior to the peer-review process.

In addition to the instruction to authors, the manuscripts must reference the dataset by
a) citing the dataset's DOI
b) appearing in the paper's list of references
c) including “GBIF Freshwater” in the Project Data: Title and “2022“ in Project Data: Identifier in the dataset’s metadata.

Definition of terms

Datasets with clear research relevance for species inhabiting or dependent on freshwater habitats

This sponsored call for data papers has a thematic focus on species that depend on freshwater environments. Datasets may contain "bycatch" records for terrestrial or marine species but significant majority—roughly 80 per cent—of all records in a given dataset must be for species with an unquestionable dependence on freshwater environments for at least some portion of their lives.

Authors may prepare data papers describing checklist, occurrence or sampling-event datasets; this blog post can help authors determine the most suitable class for organizing their data. See examples of existing checklist, occurrence, and sampling-event datasets.

Datasets with more than 5,000 presence records new to GBIF.org

Datasets should contain at approximately 5,000 presence records new to GBIF.org in 2022. Checklist and sampling-event datasets below the threshold may be considered eligible on the basis of exceptional value and handled case-by-case by the editor. Minimum publishable units, salami publishing and dataset version papers are discouraged: datasets should be published in their original, untrimmed state.

Many datasets are, by nature, dynamic, and while a data paper promotes and describes the dataset at its current state at submission, the dataset link can and often will resolve to the evolving online resource. Therefore, a data paper should ideally be written in a way that it serves as a showcase, a bibliographic citation, and a persistent home for the dataset.

Datasets with high-quality data and metadata

Authors should start by publishing a dataset comprised of data and metadata that meets GBIF's stated data-quality requirements. This effort will likely involve work on an installation of the GBIF Integrated Publishing Toolkit. If the Darwin Core archive is constructed elsewhere, the use of the GBIF Data Validator is recommended before the publication.