This project builds the capacity of a national data holder network in Angola to digitize and manage biodiversity data. The Angolan node of the international research centre Southern African Science Service Centre for Climate Change and Adaptive Land Management (SASSCAL) is developing a national network of data providers, holding institutions and data users, in keeping with its mission. Funding from the BID programme goes towards training members of the network in digitizing and publishing data.
The project will develop a national biodiversity data portal and will publish more than 100,000 specimen and sampling-event data records. Published records will contribute to mapping species distributions and priority conservation areas.
A memorandum of understanding formalizing data sharing agreements has been signed between the Southern African Science Service Centre for Climate Change and Adaptive Land Management (SASSCAL), Angola and Instituto de Investigação Agronómica (IIA). Discussions about the development of a National Biodiversity Data Portal have also started with the Instituto Nacional de Biodiversidade e Areas de Conservação (INBAC).
A core team involving SASSCAL-BID and IIA collaborators is currently working on the Herbarium and Insect collections at the IIA. Specimens are being preserved and sorted by family and genera. Digitization of the Entomological collection has started, with the digitization of the Hymenoptera order already completed.
A member of the project team attended the first GBIF-BID capacity enhancement training workshop held in Kigali, Rwanda, and shared information received about digitization with the core team. Contacts with SANBI in South Africa and University of Oxford in the United Kingdom have been taken to further enhance the project team capacity.