The Biological Collection Access Service for Europe (BioCASE)
(project completed 2004)
A transnational network of biological collections of all kinds.
BioCASE was a transnational network of biological collections of all kinds which enabled widespread unified access to distributed and heterogeneous European collection and observational databases using open-source, system-independent software and open data standards and protocols. It was built on the predecessor projects Common Datastructure for European Floristic Databases (CDEFD), Biological Collection Information Service for Europe (BioCISE), and European Natural History Specimen Information Network (ENHSIN) which laid the groundwork for implementing a fully functional service unlocking the immense biological knowledge base formed by biological collections. During the European Union Framework Programme V (FPV)-funded project phase (2001-2004), partners from 31 countries established the network, starting with meta-information on thousands of biological collections, and followed by a unit-level access network. ‘Unit-level' data refer to individual collection or observation units, i.e. individual specimens or observation records. In contrast, 'collection-level metadata' consist of records describing entire collections of such units. This information comes in formats ranging from XML and text data to high-resolution images and even video files.
The continuous development of BioCASE, as well as user and data provider support, was supported by the European Union projects ENBI and SYNTHESYS, as well as by other initiatives such as the GBIF mirror and replication project.
Project duration: 2001-2004
Project Partners and Collaborators
Freie Universität Berlin, Botanic Garden and Botanical Museum Berlin-Dahlem, (BGBM)
Israel Nature and National Parks Protection Authority
Laboratoire Informatique et Systématique, Université Paris
Zoological Museum, Universiteit van Amsterdam
Natural History Museum, London
School of Biological Sciences, University of Southampton
and 24 other European partners
European Union FPV (contract number EVR1-CT-2001-40017)