Pre-announcement: BID call for proposals from Africa

GBIF will issue the first call for proposals for its BID programme in the African region in September 2015, with a potential total of €900,000 in funding assigned to this call.

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GBIF, the Global Biodiversity Information Facility, will issue its first call for proposals from sub-Saharan Africa for the Biodiversity Information for Development (BID) programme in September 2015, with a potential total of €900,000 in funding assigned to this call.

Funded by the European Union and led by GBIF, BID is a multi-year programme to increase the availability and use of biodiversity information for research and decision-making in the ‘ACP’ nations of sub-Saharan Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific.

This call for proposals will favour projects that:

  • Mobilize biodiversity data related to protected areas, threatened species, and invasive alien species

  • Generate best practices in digitizing natural history collections and/or in mobilizing sample-based biodiversity data, species occurrence data, checklist data, or dataset descriptions

  • Engage users of biodiversity data in producing guiding examples of the integration of biodiversity data into decision-making and research, and ensure the mobilized data are suited to the user’s needs

  • Develop lasting national, regional or thematic networks to support ongoing data sharing and reuse

Three broad categories of grants are anticipated

  1. National biodiversity data mobilization grants seeking to establish or strengthen national biodiversity information facilities and to sustainably increase the biodiversity data available about the country to respond to national priorities. Up to €60,000 will be made available per national consortium.

  2. Regional biodiversity data mobilization grants to develop international collaborations to sustainably increase biodiversity data relevant for biodiversity conservation priorities. A minimum of three partners in a consortium, in which each partner can receive up to €20,000 and for which the identified lead agency coordinating the activities of the partners may receive a maximum grant of €30,000.

  3. Small biodiversity data mobilization grants of up to €5,000, which seek to mobilize biodiversity data through the preparation of data papers from individual data holders (individual persons, institutions, projects) targeted for use in decision-making and/or research.

Eligible applicants must be legal non-private sector entities located in an African ACP country, such as national government agencies, GBIF Participant nodes, natural history museums and collections, research institutes, universities, and NGOs. During the course of the BID programme, each applicant can receive up to a maximum of € 60,000 in project funding. All applicants must include project co-funding as well as plans to ensure sustainability of activities after project support from BID concludes. The BID programme funds will support staff time, travel and costs associated with the organization of meetings and workshops, and for national and regional grants a limited amount of cost for IT services and equipment.

Biodiversity data types and open access

GBIF promotes open access to biodiversity data via the internet. All projects receiving BID grants are expected to publish data through GBIF under a CC-BY or CC0 license. Data mobilization includes all the steps in making existing biodiversity data available for reuse, from digitization, to data management, cleaning and mapping to international standards, to the publishing of the data on the internet. Mobilized data must comprise one of the data types that can be published through the GBIF network: occurrences, sample-based data, checklists and metadata. Learn more about GBIF's data publishing and endorsement procedures here.

GBIF anticipates providing assistance in arranging data hosting options to support data publication and long-term availability in cases where nations and institutions cannot provide them.

Capacity enhancement support for grant recipients

Projects funded through BID will have the opportunity to receive support in developing the skills and expertise to reach their objectives. Available services will include:

  • A remote technical helpdesk service that provides recipients of all grant types with technical guidance on data publishing, management, access and use.

  • Capacity enhancement workshops organized for national and regional grant recipients during project implementation.

  • Mentoring support from experts within the GBIF network for national and regional grant recipients

Application process and timeline

GBIF tentatively plans to issue the first call for proposals in September 2015. The two-stage application process will include:

  • Submission of an initial concept note to allow preliminary assessment (by November 2015)

  • Submission of full proposals for selected activities based on concept notes (by January 2016)

GBIF will provide application templates for each type of grant when issuing the call.

Those interested can sign up to receive updates on the programme; general questions may be sent to


| | This programme is funded by the European Union. |