FUSION
FUnctionality Sharing In Open eNvironments
Heinz Nixdorf Chair for Distributed Information Systems
 

Towards an ecological trait‐data standard

Title: Towards an ecological trait‐data standard
Authors: Florian D. Schneider, David Fichtmueller, Martin M. Gossner, Anton Güntsch, Malte Jochum, Birgitta König‐Ries, Gaëtane Le Provost, Peter Manning, Andreas Ostrowski, Caterina Penone, Nadja K. Simons
Place: Methods in Ecology and Evolution
Date: 2019-08-19
Type: Publication
Abstract:

Abstract

  1. Trait‐based approaches are widespread throughout ecological research as they offer great potential to achieve a general understanding of a wide range of ecological and evolutionary mechanisms. Accordingly, a wealth of trait data is available for many organism groups, but this data is underexploited due to a lack of standardization and heterogeneity in data formats and definitions.
  2. We review current initiatives and structures developed for standardizing trait data and discuss the importance of standardization for trait data hosted in distributed open‐access repositories.
  3. In order to facilitate the standardization and harmonization of distributed trait datasets by data providers and data users, we propose a standardized vocabulary that can be used for storing and sharing ecological trait data. We discuss potential incentives and challenges for the wide adoption of such a standard by data providers.
  4. The use of a standard vocabulary allows for trait datasets from heterogeneous sources to be aggregated more easily into compilations and facilitates the creation of interfaces between software tools for trait‐data handling and analysis. By aiding decentralized trait‐data standardization, our vocabulary may ease data integration and use of trait data for a broader ecological research community and enable global syntheses across a wide range of taxa and ecosystems.

URL: https://doi.org/10.1111/2041-210X.13288
BibTex:
@article{doi:10.1111/2041-210X.13288,
author = {Schneider, Florian D. and Fichtmueller, David and Gossner, Martin M. and Güntsch, Anton and Jochum, Malte and König-Ries, Birgitta and Le Provost, Gaëtane and Manning, Peter and Ostrowski, Andreas and Penone, Caterina and Simons, Nadja K.},
title = {Towards an ecological trait-data standard},
journal = {Methods in Ecology and Evolution},
volume = {0},
number = {0},
pages = {},
keywords = {data standardization, ecoinformatics, functional ecology, ontologies, semantic web, species traits},
doi = {10.1111/2041-210X.13288},
url = {https://besjournals.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/2041-210X.13288},
eprint = {https://besjournals.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/pdf/10.1111/2041-210X.13288},
abstract = {Abstract Trait-based approaches are widespread throughout ecological research as they offer great potential to achieve a general understanding of a wide range of ecological and evolutionary mechanisms. Accordingly, a wealth of trait data is available for many organism groups, but this data is underexploited due to a lack of standardization and heterogeneity in data formats and definitions. We review current initiatives and structures developed for standardizing trait data and discuss the importance of standardization for trait data hosted in distributed open-access repositories. In order to facilitate the standardization and harmonization of distributed trait datasets by data providers and data users, we propose a standardized vocabulary that can be used for storing and sharing ecological trait data. We discuss potential incentives and challenges for the wide adoption of such a standard by data providers. The use of a standard vocabulary allows for trait datasets from heterogeneous sources to be aggregated more easily into compilations and facilitates the creation of interfaces between software tools for trait-data handling and analysis. By aiding decentralized trait-data standardization, our vocabulary may ease data integration and use of trait data for a broader ecological research community and enable global syntheses across a wide range of taxa and ecosystems.}
}