Resources in Belgium
information on the structure of the database
BIODIV is constructed as a relational database that
can be consulted via Internet
(Homepage in different languages, contents in English)
BIODIV contains different
tables such as:
INSTITUTION: a list of institutions involved in biodiversity.
An institution according to the definition used in BIODIV
can be a university, museum ... (see list this page
Each institution is described by at least a working name
(preferrably in English), eventually accompanied by official names in French,
Dutch, German and their respective abbreviations.
One or more categories (lists the same
entities ) are attributed to each institution and, if appropriate,
to its subunits.
SUBUNITS or GROUPS: this table contains the
different subunits of a given institution , limited however to those involved
in biodiversity, their address, phone, fax, e-mail, and working language
(in Belgium mainly Dutch and French).
One or more categories (lists the same
entities ) can be attributed to these subunits, especially when the
category of the subunit differs from the one/those of the mother institution.
PEOPLE: a list of people involved in biodiversity.
This table contains names, phone numbers, fax numbers,
In this respect BIODIV can be usefull as a directory.
RESEARCH TITLES: a list of informative research titles
(title, URL, start and end date, ...)
COLLECTIONS: a list of informative names of biological
collections related to biodiversity. Each collection may be related to
one or more databases. A database in itself is considered as a collection,
as is a dedicated set of slides, books, reprints, etc. Collections are
described with a few parameters like number of specimens, number of species,
number of type specimens, age,... .
DATABASES: are directly linked to a collection and
contains a.o. information on the number of records and the software used.
RESEARCH or COLLECTION TRIPLETS : the unit
of the system BIODIV;
a triplet is a link between a person, a research item
or collection and a subunit of an institution.
The keywords are necessary to search the scientific information
in the database BIODIV, of both parts RESEARCH and COLLECTIONS.
Keywords are distributed over three separate tables:
taxonomy, geography and miscellaneous. There are no limitations as to the
number of keywords used. BIODIV accepts any keyword a researcher puts forward,
but takes the liberty of adding other usefull keywords.
A thesaurus is being made from the collection of keywords
used, with reference to existing thesauri.
GEOGRAPHY: any name or noun with a geographical meaning;
preferrably 'world' or 'worldwide' is not used, but replaced by an
enumeration of the continents.
TAXONOMY: scientific names of taxa, at any level,
are used; vernacular names are not normally used, one big exception being
MISCELLANEOUS: any keyword that does not belong
under a geographical or taxonomical heading.
INFORMATION: allows for extra comments or information
of any kind about a research title or a collection.
PUBLICATIONS: a list of publications of any kind related
to a research title; BIODIV especially invites people to put in references
on 'grey literature' (lesser known periodicals, unpublished reports,... ).
Furthermore there are extra databases to enhance the
service of BIODIV to the community.
EVENTS: announcements of symposia, conferences,...
. This part offers free access to anyone wishing to communicate an initiative.
NEWS: announcements on any important features (other
than events), like questionnaires, publication of major reference books,
new interesting periodicals, ...(managed by the webmasters, but any suggestions
LITERATURE: a list of recommended literature (in continuous
construction), described by fixed keywords organised in 4 groups (ecology
and conservation, references, regions, taxa) (managed by the webmasters,
but any suggestions are welcome).
IMAGES: BIODIV allows people to add
images related to their research titles. See this
page for more information.
How to add information:
How to modify information:
BIODIV allows you to add or modify information using forms
on the website and send them electronically (use this
There are two different forms available, one for research items,
one for collections. For security reasons all
information sent is not automatically incorporated in the
thus not immediately available on the BIODIV
It takes a signed fax for CONFIRMATION (print of the faxpage
automatically generated after sending the form), after
which the information is checked and added to the
internal database. An update of the website sends
the new information into cyberspace.
How to retrieve
Following largely the same procedure as above, any existing
information in BIODIV can be recalled as a completed form, modified and
resent in the same way as stated above. Confirmation needed.
BIODIV is coupled to and used by other Belgian and European
metadatabases like Biodiversity
in Wallonia BioCISE
, Metafro Infosys
BIODIV is also being used by the Belgian government to
define the Belgian research on biodiversity in terms of the international
If you have any comments please send a mail to Guido
Rappé or Alain