Building on a collaboration that started nearly a decade ago, GBIF France will provide guidance and technical backing to support GBIF Benin's data mobilization strategy. The partners aim to help institutions in Benin publish both new data and data types (e.g. sampling-event datasets), relying on tools and practices developed within the GBIF network.
The partnership aims to improve the technical capacities of Benin's node and data providers through a workshop that will focus on using species occurrence data in the R software environment, improving data quality with OpenRefine and establishing a data portal powered by the Atlas of Living Australia infrastructure. The latter element promises to bring GBIF Benin into the growing community of Living Atlases, gaining the benefit of others' advice, technical knowledge and experience. GBIF Benin will record the workshop for future reuse in an online course hosted on the GBIF France training website.
Given that mentoring provides a valuable opportunity for self-assessment and reflection on one's own capacities, GBIF France also expects to gain from this project, learning as well from GBIF Benin can share its skills and leadership in the GIS domain. Conducting the project in French should enhance interactions between nodes staff, potential data providers and stakeholders.
The project will lead to the identification and publication of new datasets as well as a new, highly functional website that improves regional communication and data access.
Potential data holders were trained to enable more data mobilization on GBIF and GBIF Benin sites and outreach sessions were organized to present the GBIF network and GBIF Benin to Beninese institutions and stakeholders. This was achieved through delivering two workshops. Firstly, the GBIF Benin team were invited by CREDI ONG in July 2018, a Beninese NGO involved with the project, to hold sessions on biodiversity data publishing and visibility. Following a second data publication workshop in September 2018 hosted by the project team which provided information to potential stakeholders, three new institutions in Benin are registered on GBIF.org; Le Centre National de Gestion des Réserves de Faune (CENAGREF), L’Hôpital de Mènontin and Organisation pour le Développement Durable et la Biodiversité (ODDB) are ready to publish data in the region. Since then, new metadata and datasets have been published via the GBIF.org platform and also through GBIF Benin’s website. Through the projects aims, the team have achieved a total of 3 datasets and over 4500 occurrences published on the GBIF site. With the project now complete, work will continue to train biodiversity stakeholders how to publish datasets.