Environmental sciences and engineering

The Access to Biological Collections Data (ABCD) Schema is an evolving comprehensive standard for the access to and exchange of data about specimens and observations (a.k.a. primary biodiversity data). The ABCD Schema attempts to be comprehensive and highly structured, supporting data from a wide variety of databases. It is compatible with several existing data standards. Parallel structures exist so that either (or both) atomised data and free-text can be accommodated.

The ABCD Schema was ratified as a standard by the Biodiversity Information Standards Taxonomic Databases Working Group (TDWG) in 2005. It was developed as a community-driven effort, with contributions from CODATA, BioCASE and GBIF among other organizations.

A body of standards, including a glossary of terms (in other contexts these might be called properties, elements, fields, columns, attributes, or concepts) intended to facilitate the sharing of information about biological diversity by providing reference definitions, examples, and commentaries.

Sponsored by Biodiversity Information Standards (TWDG), the current standard was last modified in October 2009.

An early metadata initiative from the Earth sciences community, intended for the description of scientific data sets. It includes elements focusing on instruments that capture data, temporal and spatial characteristics of the data, and projects with which the dataset is associated. It is defined as a W3C XML Schema.

Sponsored by the Global Change Master Directory, the DIF Writer's Guide Version 6 is from November 2010.

The European Directory of Marine Environmental Datasets metadata scheme, which is a profile of ISO 19115.

Ecological Metadata Language (EML) is a metadata specification particularly developed for the ecology discipline. It is based on prior work done by the Ecological Society of America and associated efforts (Michener et al., 1997, Ecological Applications).

Established by a global network of countries and organizations, GBIF is a web portal promoting and facilitating the mobilization, access, discovery and use of biodiversity data. The portal uses a profile of EML; a How-to Guide and Reference Guide for using the profile are available.

A common portal to a group of nearly 40 checklists of Minimum Information for various biological disciplines. The MIBBI Foundry is developing a cross-analysis of these guidelines to create an intercompatible, extensible community of standards.

The concept was realized initially through the joint efforts of the Proteomics Standards Initiative, the Genomic Standards Consortium and the MGED RSBI Working Groups. The latest project to register with MIBBI is the MIABie guidelines for reporting biofilm research, as of January 2012.

MIxS currently consists of three separate checklists; MIGS for genomes, MIMS for metagenomes, and MIMARKS for marker genes. To create a single entry point to all minimum information checklists from the GSC and to the environmental packages, we created an overarching framework, the MIxS standard (publication in Nature Biotechnology). MIxS includes the technology-specific checklists from the previous MIGS and MIMS standards, provides a way of introducing additional checklists such as MIMARKS, and also allows annotation of sample data using environmental packages.

Some repositories have decided that current standards do not fit their metadata needs, and so have created their own requirements.

A metadata standard for describing environmental monitoring activities, programmes, networks and facilities published by the UK Environmental Observation Framework (UKEOF).