Save the Date: Methods, Protocols, and Analytical Tools for Specimen-based Research in the Biological Sciences


Third Annual Digital Data in Biodiversity Research Conference

The Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History in collaboration with iDigBio of the Florida Museum of Natural History, the Natural Science Collections Alliance, and Ecological Society of America is pleased to announce the third annual Digital Data in Biodiversity Research conference, to be held 10-12 June 2019 at Yale University, New Haven, CT

The 2019 conference will focus on methods, protocols, and analytical tools for the use of digital data in biodiversity research and encompass the uses of such data across all disciplines within the biological and ecological sciences. Special emphasis is placed on the use of digitized specimen data and big data analytics. Please watch for further announcements via several listservs and on this announcement page ( The conference will again provide an important opportunity to explore digital data tools, techniques, research protocols, discoveries, and outcomes across all biodiversity research domains. For further information or to ensure that you are on the conference email list, please contact Gil Nelson ( or Jill Goodwin ( at iDigBio.

Digital Data Conference Registration Fees: 

  • $100.00 for professionals
  • $50.00 for students. 

Final Registration deadline: 17 May 2019

We are pleased to be collaborating with Ecological Society of America and co-locating this year's conference with ESA's popular and successful course Strategies for Success: Training for Project Directors. This course helps leaders of digital data resources, collections, field stations, and labs enhance their skills in strategic planning, communication, and financial management to make their projects more successful and sustainable. The course will be held June 12-14. Limited space available. Please contact Jill Parsons, ESA’s Associate Director of Science Programs, at or Emily Mastrianni, Science Programs Specialist, at for more information

  • Enrollment: $849 (discounted from $975).
  • Colleague discount:(second team member from the same project/lab/etc) $649.

To register for the conference and/or SBI course

For agenda and logistic information visit the conference wiki page:,_Yale

Lodging: Please visit the following link to review lodging information in the area. We are offering economy lodging again this year. More information can be found here:

Abstract Submissions:
New this year is the opportunity to submit abstracts for half or full-day workshops and symposia to be held on Wednesday the 12th. Those submitting workshop or symposium abstracts must register and submit their abstract prior to 23 March. 

Again this year is the opportunity to propose discussion sessions on digital data topics of interest. Discussion sessions may be up to one hour long and will be scheduled within the cconcurrent sessions on Monday and Tuesday. These may begin wiht a presentation or introduction followed by discussion, or may be completely devoted to open discussion.
Those submitting discussion, oral, or poster presentation abstracts must register and submit their abstract prior to 30 April.
Abstract submisson deadlines:
  • For workshop proposals: 23 March 2019
  • For oral or poster presentations or discussion sessions: 30 April 2019

You must register prior to these dates to make a timely abstract submission.

 PLEASE NOTE: You will receive a link to the abstract submission form in your registration confirmation email, scroll down to the bottom.

Themes for oral presentations and posters might include:
  • published or publishable biodiversity research using digitized specimen data,
  • methods and protocols for enhancing discovery with digitized specimen data,
  • systematics and the use of digital specimen data,
  • ongoing research projects that utilize digital data,
  • gaps and deficiencies in currently available digital data that hinder effective use,
  • user critiques of digital data, aggregators, and data providers,
  • pipelines that integrate digitization, data use, and research,
  • standards and practices for depositing and documenting open access digital datasets,
  • the role and relevance of “Big Data” in biodiversity research,
  • use of digitized biodiversity specimen data within ecological research and practice,
  • conservation use of digital specimen data,
  • the relative importance of vouchers vs. observations as digital data,
  • managing digital biodiversity specimen data in support of research pipelines,
  • analyzing and visualizing specimen-based and related digital data.

Keynote and Plenary Speakers for this year's conference include:

  • Rosemary Gillespie, Professor & Schlinger Chair in Systematic Entomology, Berkeley EvoLab, University of California, Berkeley, Essig Museum of Entomology, Department of Environmental Science.
  • Nico Franz, Professor, School of Life Sciences, Arizona State University (ASU) Curator of the Hasbrouck Insect Collection, Lead Coordinator of the Natural History Collections, Director of the Biodiversity Knowledge Integration Center (BioKIC), and Director of the National Ecological Observatory Network (NEON) Biorepository.
  • Caroline Strömberg, Professor, Department of Biology, University of Washington, 2017 receipient of the prestigious Charles Schuchert Award from the Paleontological Society.
  • Walter Jetz, Professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology and of Forestry and Environmental Studies, Jetz Lab: Global Biodiversity, Ecology & Conservation, Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Yale University.
  • Pincelli Hull, Assistant Professor, Geology and Geophysics, Department of Geology & Geophysics, Yale University.
  • Charles C. Davis, Professor, Organismic and Evolutionary Biology, Curator of Vascular Plants and Director, Harvard University Herbaria.
  • Joe Miller, Executive Secretary, Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF)
  • Andrea Weeks, National Science Foundation

The planning team for the 2019 conference includes Tim White, Patrick Sweeney, Larry Gall, Susan Butts, Michael Donoghue, Nelson Rios, Greg Watkins-Colwell, and Michelle Duong from Yale, and Gil Nelson, Jill Goodwin, and Pam Soltis from iDigBio.

This year's event is sponsored by Yale University and iDigBio.