Distributed System of Scientific Collections

Providing hard evidence on our planet’s natural diversity

The DiSSCo environment

A worldwide infrastructure

The Distributed System of Scientific Collections is a new world-class Research Infrastructure (RI) for natural science collections. The DiSSCo RI works for the digital unification of all European natural science assets under common curation and access policies and practices that aim to make the data easily Findable, more Accessible, Interoperable and Reusable (FAIR). As such, DiSSCo enables the transformation of a fragmented landscape of the crucial natural science collections into an integrated knowledge base that provides interconnected hard evidence on the natural world.

DiSSCo represents the largest ever formal agreement between natural history museums, botanical gardens and collection-holding universities in the world.

What we do

The projects of DiSSCo

Catalogue of Life+

To conduct species-based biodiversity research you need to know two things: their names, so everybody speaks about the same species, and if they have been described before. To look that up, you need a species checklist and taxonomic hierarchy. That is the Catalogue of Life. Und to run such a service, you need a functioning infrastructure: The Catalogue of Life+

ENVRI-FAIR

Bringing together Environmental and Earth System Research Infrastructures to look for synergies is the ultimate goal of projects for the cluster of these RIs, the latest being ENVRI-FAIR. It started in January 2019 and will connect the cluster to the European Open Science Cloud.

Logo MOBILISE

MOBILISE

To build and extend the network that supports DiSSCo is the task of the MOBILISE COST Action. The far reaching networking and training project will strengthen knowledge exchange and capacity building. The best part: It is open to join for all institutions in COST countries involved in research for biodiversity and geodiversity informatics.

SYNTHESYS+

The SYNTHESYS programme might be best known for the access it provides to natural science collections since 15 years. But it does so much more than that! Networking Actions and Joint Research Activities are equally part of SYNTHESYS. In its latest iteration SYNTHESYS+ it also provides virtual access to digital collections – a big step towards DiSSCo.

ICEDIG

ICEDIG – Innovation and consolidation for large scale digitisation of natural heritage – is the first official step towards DiSSCo. It refines certain elements of the DiSSCo research infrastructure. It addresses the technical, financial, policy and governance aspects necessary to operate such a large distributed initiative for natural sciences collections across Europe.

What we do

The projects of DiSSCo

Catalogue of Life+

To conduct species-based biodiversity research you need to know two things: their names, so everybody speaks about the same species, and if they have been described before. To look that up, you need a species checklist and taxonomic hierarchy. That is the Catalogue of Life. Und to run such a service, you need a functioning infrastructure: The Catalogue of Life+

ENVRI-FAIR

Bringing together Environmental and Earth System Research Infrastructures to look for synergies is the ultimate goal of projects for the cluster of these RIs, the latest being ENVRI-FAIR. It started in January 2019 and will connect the cluster to the European Open Science Cloud.

Logo MOBILISE

MOBILISE

To build and extend the network that supports DiSSCo is the task of the MOBILISE COST Action. The far reaching networking and training project will strengthen knowledge exchange and capacity building. The best part: It is open to join for all institutions in COST countries involved in research for biodiversity and geodiversity informatics.

SYNTHESYS+

The SYNTHESYS programme might be best known for the access it provides to natural science collections since 15 years. But it does so much more than that! Networking Actions and Joint Research Activities are equally part of SYNTHESYS. In its latest iteration SYNTHESYS+ it also provides virtual access to digital collections – a big step towards DiSSCo.

ICEDIG

ICEDIG – Innovation and consolidation for large scale digitisation of natural heritage – is the first official step towards DiSSCo. It refines certain elements of the DiSSCo research infrastructure. It addresses the technical, financial, policy and governance aspects necessary to operate such a large distributed initiative for natural sciences collections across Europe.

Our objectives

What do we want to achieve?

DiSSCo sets the physical objects, the specimens, at the epicentre of the development of a robust, quality ensured and fit-for-purpose knowledge base for bio- and geo-diversity. The infrastructure works towards the digital unification of all European natural science assets under common curation, access policies, and best practices that aim to make the data easily Findable, more Accessible, linked and Interoperable and effectively Reusable (FAIR).

That’s what counts

DiSSCo by the Numbers

specimens

participating institutions

full-time scientists

countries

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The latest news

Data Management Plan for DiSSCo

Data Management Plan for DiSSCo

Informatics and collection data management experts from ICEDIG project and CETAF have completed a proposal for a Data Management Plan for DiSSCo

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DiSSCo Information Day in Austria

DiSSCo Information Day in Austria

On 25 November 2019, the National History Museum Vienna will host an the DiSSCo Austria Event, an information day presenting DiSSCo and the national consortium to all relevant stakeholders.

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