Biodiversity Information Science and Standards : Conference Abstract
Conference Abstract
Sharing knowledge – Innovative Solutions from New Zealand Taxonomic Collections
expand article infoSarah Tassell, Adrienne Stanton§, Aaron Wilton|, Katarina Tawiri, Megan Petterson#, Ines Schönberger¤
‡ New Zealand Arthropod Collection, Manaaki Whenua-Landcare Research, Auckland, New Zealand
§ New Zealand Fungarium, Manaaki Whenua Landcare Research, Auckland, New Zealand
| Landcare Research, Lincoln, New Zealand
¶ National New Zealand Flax Collection, Mannaki Whenua-Landcare Research, Lincoln, New Zealand
# International Collection of Living Cultures, Manaaki Whenua-Landcare Research, Auckland, New Zealand
¤ Allan Herbarium and Plant Identification Service, Lincoln, New Zealand
Open Access


Manaaki Whenua - Landcare Research (MWLR) is the custodian of nearly a third of New Zealand’s nationally significant natural history collections and databases. MWLR is a New Zealand Government-owned Research Institute whose purpose is to drive innovation in the management of terrestrial biodiversity and land resources. Active research programmes are associated with the collections and innovative projects to disseminate the resulting knowledge to the public have been developed. A number of these projects have focused on two-way sharing of knowledge and information with Māori, Aotearoa/New Zealand’s first people. Examples of science projects combining collections resources, community knowledge and research to produce bilingual guides, websites and teaching tools include:

  • Ahi Pepe | Mothnet, a citizen science project that engages teachers, students and Māori with nature and science across New Zealand
  • What is this bug?, a web-based invertebrate identification guide with bilingual translation (He Aha Tēnei Pepeke)
  • Ngā Hekaheka o Aotearoa, a bilingual teaching resource combining scientific research with Māori ancestral knowledge and usage of fungi.
  • Discover New Life, a project where researchers worked with students to discover and describe species new to science
  • National New Zealand Flax Collection (HARAKEKE) , a living plant collection of weaving varieties of harakeke (NZ flax), providing plants and associated website resources on research, cultivation and traditional usage of harakeke for Māori weavers and the broader community.

These projects have allowed development of ongoing relationships and knowledge sharing between MWLR natural history collections and New Zealand communities, enriching the collections and associated data for all.


Citizen Science, Systematics, Indigenous Knowledge, Bilingual, Herbarium, Fungi, Invertebrate

Presenting author

Adrienne Stanton and Sarah Tassell

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