Our Chairman’s welcome

A warm welcome to the National Biodiversity Network’s first blog! This is a place where we’ll share updates on the work of the Secretariat as well as stories from our members and data partners across the Network.

The work of our partnership is diverse, but has a common aim, to make our biological data open and shared so that it is central to the UK’s learning and understanding of its biodiversity.

I have been Chairman of the NBN for four years and in that time have seen hugely positive changes in respect of our aim and vision; from there being 70 million records on the NBN Gateway in April 2012 to over 128 million today and from several iterations of the NBN Gateway over that period to the (soft) launch of the NBN Atlas Scotland in May 2016, with the other country Atlases to follow in the next year.

I became Chairman of the NBN because I believe the work of the Network, and that means all of its partners, is hugely important. Without all of you who record, collect, manage and disseminate biological data it would be much more difficult for the partnership to analyse and use the data to make informed decisions about our environment.

The NBN Strategy 2015 – 2020 and NBN Action Plan 2016 – 2020 are really starting to guide our work and the way forward for our Network.  The last few years, which saw the development of these documents, brought into sharp focus what an extraordinary and committed partnership we are. Through workshops and questionnaires, consultations and discussion forums we have all had the opportunity to participate in determining our Strategic direction and it has been fantastic to see the responses come in.  Yes, some have challenged us, but we have all spoken out and been listened to.  That is not an easy thing to do with 450 Network members, data partners, potential collaborators and NBN Gateway users taking part!  We should all be very proud of this.

We’ve set up this blog to continue the collaborative nature of the Network and to allow ongoing communication. It will be an opportunity for you to tell us your stories, as much as it is for the Secretariat to tell you about the work of our small team. The blog won’t replace Network News, which will still be issued on a monthly basis, but it will allow us all to share information more regularly.

We are a partnership of passionate people and organisations, all with interesting stories to tell. I do hope you will take the opportunity to get involved.

For more information on submitting a story for our blog please contact Mandy Henshall

And don’t forget, one of the best places for hearing about the work of the Network is at our annual Conference, which is taking place on 17th and 18th November at the National Museums Scotland in Edinburgh.  I very much hope to see you there.

M Hassell

Michael Hassell

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