Proceedings of TDWG : Conference Abstract
Conference Abstract
Proposed Extension to Darwin Core for People and their Roles in the Curation of Physical and Digital Objects
expand article info David Peter Shorthouse
‡ Canadian Museum of Nature, Ottawa, Canada
Open Access


The Global Biodiversity Information Facility's 2017-2021 implementation plan includes an item with a scheduled start in 2017 to develop mechanisms to support and reflect the skills, expertise and experience of individual and organizational contributions to their network. This includes revision of their identity management system and integration of Open Researcher and Contributor IDs (ORCID). Likewise, the Joint TDWG/Research Data Alliance Interest Group on metadata standards for attribution of physical and digital collection stewardship seeks to develop metadata standards for attributing curatorial actions. Here, I propose a lightweight extension to Darwin Core to accommodate new terms for agent identifiers and their roles in the curation of physical and digital objects. In parallel, I propose shared mechanisms and codebases to help parse and disambiguate agent names in the existing Darwin Core terms: recordedBy, identifiedBy, and scientificNameAuthorship. The solutions to deal with legacy data must fit within the Biodiversity Data Quality Interest Group's recently proposed conceptual framework and be made available to individual museums, and national and international aggregators of biodiversity data. A case study using occurrence data from the Canadensys network will reveal the challenges in reconciling people names and will uncover exciting opportunities for engagement when people are shown the impact they have on their research and collections communities.


Darwin Core extension, ORCID, role, attribution, collections, curator

Presenting author

David Peter Shorthouse

Conflicts of interest


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