Call for data papers describing datasets from Northern Eurasia (closed)

GBIF partners with FinBIF and Pensoft to support publication of new datasets about biodiversity from across Northern Eurasia

Ommatotriton ophryticus-iNat-bulbulashvili hero
Northern banded newt (Ommatotriton ophryticus), observed in Georgia. Photo 2021 Natalia Bulbulashvili via iNaturalist Research-grade Observations, licensed under CC BY-NC 4.0.

NOTE: This call was extended with a new deadline for submissions of 1 December 2022. Submissions to the special collection will be restricted to authors affiliated with institutions in 10 Northern Eurasian countries (listed below), or from institutions outside the region, following the recommendation of the Executive Committee and conditions set by the FinBIF funders.

In collaboration with the Finnish Biodiversity Information Facility (FinBIF) and Pensoft Publishers, GBIF has announced a new call for authors to submit and publish data papers on Northern Eurasia in a special collection of Biodiversity Data Journal (BDJ). The call expands upon successful efforts to mobilize data in 2020 and in 2021.

Until 1 December 2022, Pensoft will waive the article processing fee (normally €650) for the first 50 accepted data paper manuscripts that meet the following criteria for describing a dataset:

See the complete definition of these terms below.

Detailed instructions

Authors must prepare the manuscript in English and submit it in accordance with BDJ’s instructions to authors by 1 December 2022. Late submissions will not be eligible for APC waivers.

Sponsorship is limited to the first 50 accepted submissions meeting these criteria on a first-come, first-served basis. The call for submissions can therefore close prior to the deadline of 1 December 2022. 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.

BDJ will publish a special issue including the selected papers. The journal is indexed by Web of Science (Impact Factor 1.225) and Scopus (CiteScore: 2.0).

For non-native speakers, please ensure that your English is checked either by native speakers or by professional English-language editors prior to submission. You may credit these individuals as a “Contributor” through the AWT interface. Contributors are not listed as co-authors but can help you improve your manuscripts. BDJ will introduce stricter language checks for the 2022 call; poorly written submissions will be rejected prior to the peer-review process.

In addition to the BDJ instruction to authors, data papers must referenced the dataset by
a) citing the dataset's DOI
b) appearing in the paper's list of references
c) including “Northern Eurasia 2022” in the Project Data: Title and “N-Eurasia-2022“ in Project Data: Identifier in the dataset’s metadata.

Authors should explore the section on data papers and Strategies and guidelines for scholarly publishing of biodiversity data. Manuscripts and datasets will go through a standard peer-review process. When submitting a manuscript to BDJ, authors are requested to assign their manuscript to the Topical Collection: Biota of Northern Eurasia at step 3 of the submission process. To initiate the manuscript submission, remember to press the Submit to the journal button.

To see an example, view this dataset on and the corresponding data paper published by BDJ.

Questions may be directed either to Dmitry Schigel, GBIF scientific officer, or Yasen Mutafchiev, managing editor of Biodiversity Data Journal.

This project is a continuation of successful calls for data papers in 2020 and 2021. The sponsored papers will be available in a special collection in BDJ, and the corresponding datasets will be shown on the project page at

Definition of terms

Datasets with more than 7,000 presence records new to

Datasets should contain at a minimum 7,000 presence records new to While the focus is on additional records for the region, records already published in GBIF may meet the criteria of 'new' if they are substantially improved, particularly through the addition of georeferenced locations.” Artificial reduction of records from otherwise uniform datasets to the necessary minimum (“salami publishing”) is discouraged and may result in rejection of the manuscript. New submissions describing updates of datasets, already presented in earlier published data papers will not be sponsored.

Justification for publishing datasets with fewer records (e.g. sampling-event datasets, sequence-based data, checklists with endemics etc.) will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

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 requirement. This effort will involve work on an installation of the GBIF Integrated Publishing Toolkit. BDJ will conduct its standard data audit and technical review. All datasets must pass the data audit prior to a manuscript being forwarded for peer review.

Only when the dataset is prepared should authors then turn to working on the manuscript text. The extended metadata you enter in the IPT while describing your dataset can be converted into manuscript with a single-click of a button in the ARPHA Writing Tool (see also Creation and Publication of Data Papers from Ecological Metadata Language (EML) Metadata. Authors can then complete, edit and submit manuscripts to BDJ for review.

Datasets with geographic coverage in Northern Eurasia

In correspondence with the funding priorities of this programme, at least 80% of the records in a dataset should have coordinates that fall within the priority area of Northern Eurasia, defined as Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Moldova, Georgia, Armenia and Azerbaijan.

Background: outputs from 26 April 2021 webinar