IDigBio Announces Dried Insect Digitization Workshop April 24-25, 2013


iDigBio, the National Science Foundation’s national HUB for Advancing Digitization of Biological Collections (ADBC) is pleased to announce the third in a series of preparation-specific workshops focusing on organizing, launching, maintaining, and/or enhancing a biological collections digitization program. This new workshop will focus on digitization of dried insect collections (pinned or packaged), to include specimen label databasing and specimen imaging. The target audiences for these workshops include collection managers, curators, and directors in U.S. non-federal institutions that are planning, implementing, or enhancing a digitization program, regardless of collection size. The primary goal is to prepare participants to return to their home institutions with the necessary skills and knowledge to launch or enhance a digitization program, either individually, through collaboration with an existing Thematic Collections Network (TCN), as a Partner with an Existing Collections Network (PEN), or through direct collaboration with iDigBio. Workshop topics will include but are not restricted to: 1) an overview of iDigBio, ADBC, and nationwide digitization activities; 2) strategies for organizing and launching a digitization program; 3) detailed, hands-on and demonstration overviews of digitization tasks; 4) strategies for developing effective workflows and protocols; 5) strategies for evaluating hardware and software, including database management systems; 6) procedures for image and data capture; and an introduction to tools for georeferencing and strategies for moving digitized data to the internet via iDigBio or other data aggregators and harvesters. Sample workflows, hardware specifications, and comparison software features will be available during and following the workshop through a workshop wiki. Workshop sessions will focus on practical application and hands-on implementation.


This workshop will focus on digitization of dried insect specimens, stored in drawers and trays, either pinned or in packets. The workshop will be held at The Field Museum, Chicago, Illinois April 24–25, 2013. We have funding to support travel and per diem for 24 participants. April 23 and 26 will be travel days, with a welcoming reception early evening, April 23. Those desiring to attend this workshop should complete the online application no later than February 15, 2013. Questions about the application or related issues can be addressed to Cathy Bester ( or Gil Nelson ( Participants will be notified of acceptance by March 15.


What: Workshop for Digitizing Dried Insect Collections.

Where: The Field Museum, 1400 South Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, Illinois

Who: Managers, curators, and directors of dried insect collections who are in the planning stages, early initiation, or enhancement of collection digitization.

When: April 24–25, 2013 (April 23 and 26 will be travel days)

Planning Team: Joanna McCaffrey (iDigBio), Gil Nelson (iDigBio), Petra Sierwald (The Field Museum), Margaret Thayer (The Field Museum)


Sponsored by: iDigBio (Integrated Digitized Biocollections) in collaboration with The Field Museum.