Man. Comm. 7

Skype conference

Venue: Virtual meeting

Date: 19th July 2012

Start: 10:00 BST

Duration: 2 hours

Meeting 7 : Agenda [15 May 12]

  1. Apologies for absence

  2. Project Co-ordinator's report

  3. Workpackage summaries [WP leaders]:

    1. Progress highlights;
    2. Milestones; highlighting new milestones
    3. Task - milestone - deliverable mapping;Such a mapping was required of us by the reviewers.
    4. Interdependencies with other WPs; how are we managing (inevitable) changes to workplans and the knock-on changes that are entailed
    5. Deviations from budget;
    6. Deviations from the Workplan.


  4. Budget report

  5. Technical workshops

    At the meeting in Sofia we agreed that more face-to-face contact was desirable and should be based around technical topics, rather than simply within a workpackage. Here we would like a report on workshops that have taken place and those that are planned. It would help with reporting if such workshops were listed on the events tab in the project web site.

  6. Outreach & publicity
    The public-facing website has been updated and organised around tasks rather than workpackages per se. Notice of the new pages has been circulated and task leaders are encouraged to update and enhance their pages as part of the public outreach programme.

  7. Travel plans
    This year's TDWG will be in China. ViBRANT can fund partners to travel outside Europe only if they are presenting. We need to apply to the Commission explicitly for permission. We expect all conferences for which ViBRANT funding is used to e listed on the web site. It will be used to build next year's annual report. Specifically, meetings need to be included under 'Presentations' under the 'outputs' tab.

  8. Follow-on grants
    The final call for FP7 is likely to be very well funded. We should be aware of suitable opportunities for this successful consortium. At the time of writing (Feb 12) we have not yet seen the draft calls for Infrastructures. If anyone gets access, please circulate.

  9. Biodiversity Informatics White Paper
    At the review meeting we were asked to engage with the preparation of a community vision for biodiversity informatics that has been initiated by Alex Hardisty (U. Cardiff) at the request of Carlos Morais Pires (Head of Sector for Scientific Data Infrastructures). The white paper is intended to form the basis of calls in Horizon 2020, the first drafts of which will appear in January 2013.

  10. Associated projects

    1. eMonocot
    2. agINFRA
    3. BioVEL
    4. EU-BON - funded
    5. JRS Biodiversity Foundation - submitted

  11. External links
    Links to external projects are now on the web site. This item is an opportunity to discuss the appropriateness of including any particular link.

  12. Future meeting dates

    1. 17 October 2012 (arrive), 18 October 09:00 - 17:00 in Heraklion
    2. 16 January 2013 from 10:00 to 12:00
    3. 17 April 2013 from 10:00 to 12:00
    4. 17 July 2013 from 10:00 to 12:00
    5. 16 October 2013 from 10:00 to 12:00 to 17 October at 12:00

  13. Any other business



Who Topic Action
CA training for COMBER contact TB
NC clarify UdlR workplan contact Régine and Noël
WP leaders Focused meetings solicit bids from WP members
NC update milestones to support transfer of funds
DM joint meeting on a core teaching module set up SKYPE call between key people
NC update milestones review and update milestones for WP5 partners
DM update milestones add links to completed milestones on website
LR final year budget email all partners’ administrators (cc Management Committee) requesting spend forecast
YdJ TDWG 2013 contact TDWG committee to press for an earlier decision on location.



DR - Dave Roberts, WP 1 Leader SR - Simon Rycroft, WP2 Leader
TB - Thierry Backlejau, WP3 Leader YdJ - Yde de Jong, WP4
NC - Neil Caithness, WP5 Leader LP - Lyubomir Penev, WP6 Leader
DM - David Morse, WP7 Leader CA - Christos Arvanitidis, WP8 Leader
VS - Vince Smith, Project Coordinator LR - Lucy Reeve, Project Admin
GM - Gemma Malder, Project Finance  


  1. Apologies

  2. None

  3. Actions from last meeting

    1. Videoconference with YdJ, DR, VS, Donald to talk about leadership with KOS with view to arranging larger meeting to get a sense of the landscape. GH to be included in second meeting. (DR)

      A number of conference calls have taken place and a meeting is scheduled between Gregor Hagedorn (GH) and GBIF in early August.

    2. Tangible, realistic milestones are required.(YdJ)

      In hand.

    3. Arrange seminar on batch or API-based services before September. (NC)

      Workshop on computational services in the community scheduled in Oxford on 10 September at the Digital Research 2012 conference. NC will send more details as they are finalised.

    4. Contact TB about training for COMBER (CA)

      Not done

      Action – CA to contact TB about training for COMBER

    5. YdJ to negotiate with BGBM using financial details supplied by LR (YdJ/LR)

      Transfer from BGBM to JKI is still outstanding pending clarification from GH.

    6. Clarify UdlR's workplan.(NC)

      Not been done yet. NC unclear on what is required. It was suggested UdlR could be involved in Scratchpad mobilisation. It was emphasised that something tangible is required to justify UdlR’s budget.

      Action – NC to contact Régine and Noël to clarify UdlR workplan

    7. Estimate costs for focused workshops (WP leaders)

      DR reported that no bids have been received to date. VS reminded all to keep website updated with events.

      Action – WP leaders to reiterate to rest of WP to submit bids

    8. Cost person time for developing RefBank and publishing of tomograms.(DM/LP)

      DM advised a workflow is to be distributed to partners for Refbank.

      CA informed the meeting that a paper will be delivered to LP soon. There is a problem with the size of the tomograms – this is being looked at but may prove insurmountable at the moment.

    9. Provide WP1 with estimated costs. (NC)

      Done, but milestones still required to justify the extra cost.

      Action – NC to provide updated milestones

    10. disseminate information on budget potential for topic-focus meetings to their WP (WP leaders)


    11. Bids for focus meetings, no longer than one side of A4 with budget and concept, to be submitted to DR(WP leaders)

      See (g) above

    12. Liaise with agINFRA for a joint meeting on a core teaching module, possibly in Athens. (DM)

      DM told the Committee that discussions with AgINRFA have taken place and closer links with ViBRANT were welcomed. Currently it is unclear on focus and direction of the joint meeting.

      Action - DM to set up SKYPE call between key people

    13. As Chromosome page previews are released, check with people who are represented on the pages. (WP leaders)

      Nearly ready for public release.

    14. Bids to DR for TDWG and any other travel that is out of the ordinary or outside EU (All partners)

      DR informed the Committee that permission has been sought from the EU for 7 people to attend TDWG (update: permission has been granted). Earlybird registration closes at the end of July; however the site is yet to open.

    15. Create public view of external links (DR)

      DR advised that the external links are not appropriate for public consumption yet.

  4. Project Coordinator’s report

  5. DR attended the GBIC meeting 2-4 July 2012. This was useful. A press release is available, and a more detailed paper to follow.

    The White Paper will be an important contribution to ViBRANT activities this year.

    Biodiversity Data Journal work is going well, and VS has accepted the position of Editor-in-Chief.

    DR, VS and DM attended an EU event looking at current ICT call in FP7 and Horizon 2020 changes. Information will be circulated if an opportunity arises. Horizon 2020 is likely to have calls in 2014 at the earliest so there will be a gap between ViBRANT and any successor project. There is still much uncertainty over Horizon 2020.

    Irina Brake has left the NHM. 8 candidates are being interviewed week commencing 23 July to fill the post. Candidates for developer positions at NHM are also being interviewed.

    LP and VS will be attending International Congress of Entomology in Korea. LP will be talking about data publishing.

    There is a symposium on Biodiversity Technologies in Oxford on 27 and 28 October 2012, in which ViBRANT will be presented.

    Science Uncovered takes place at NHM on 28 September; ViBRANT will be represented.

  6. Workpackage Updates

  7. WP2: Scratchpad 2 uptake still very good and feedback has been positive. Migration from Scratchpad 1 to 2 will start w/c 23 July 2012. Scratchpad registry has been delivered using the GBIF registry. Lorna from Berlin has been at the NHM working on the DarwinCore export module, which will be able to register with the GBIF registry.

    WP3: Basic and advanced training sessions continue to be arranged. The Helpdesk has been responding to queries and help articles and video tutorials are available.

    The Ambassadors programme and sociological studies continue to develop, and the User survey 2012 is being prepared.

    WP4: YdJ unavailable to provide update.

    WP5: The OBOE website has been redesigned – NC encouraged all to log on and provide feedback. Work has been done with BioVeL to get Taverna server up and running

    Action – NC to review milestones for WP5 partners add updated milestones

    WP6: Pensoft Writing Tool is ready for testing. The new Biodiversity Data Journal will be launched at the end of 2012. There has been a 1-2 month delay with milestone 6.15 (XML papers) but otherwise no deviation from workplan.

    WP7: RefBank now has over 115k references and more to be added along with interface developments. LP and DM need to plan taking RefBank forward.

    Guido is isolating components of GoldenGate to be included as OBOE services. A workshop will take place with Guido and Milo to complete this. Milestones have been adjusted – some brought forward and data mining has been pushed back.

    Action – DM to add link to completed milestones on website

    WP8: COMBER is making progress and expanding to different areas. There is the possibility of submitting an application to the Greek Secretariat to expand activity on a national scale. Some milestones are being pushed back.

    HCMR will be overspent in Year 2, as anticipated.

  8. Financial update

  9. All the Form C’s received have been submitted. UOxf, VU and KNAW were not received in time so their costs will be disallowed. Adjustments will need to be submitted at the end of Year 2 for these partners. Payment is expected to be in September.

    All partners will need to submit a spend forecast in time for LR to collate prior to the October Committee meeting.

    Action – LR to email all partners’ administrators (cc Management Committee) requesting spend forecast

  10. Technical workshops

  11. None have been proposed formally.

  12. Outreach and publicity

  13. The front page of ViBRANT will be relaunched. It was commented that there have been fewer conference appearances this year. site is being rebuilt and redesigned and will go live in the autumn. COMBER and OBOE sites have been redesigned.

    YdJ proposed another special issue: it was agreed that this would be a good idea.

  14. Travel plans

  15. TDWG already covered in 2(n). A bid to host TDWG 2013 in London has been submitted. A decision made at Beijing

    Action – YdJ to contact TDWG committee to try and get an earlier decision on the next location.

  16. Follow-on grants

  17. The ICT calls were announced on 10 July 2012 and two areas are promising; “Reuse” and “Access to Infrastructure”.

  18. Biodiversity Informatics White Paper

  19. Three commission members attended the most recent meeting. The draft text was worked through and DR will implement the changes. DR will attend (remotely) the GBIF Nodes meeting 23 July 2012. He is confident the white paper and the GBIC report will give the same basic message.

  20. Associated projects

    1. eMonocot: Lots of parallels with training. In addition, 2 NSF proposals have been submitted which include Scratchpads.
    2. agINFRA: DM will take forward joint workshops.
    3. Bio-VEL: no update
    4. EU-BON: Funded but lots of budget cuts. Contains lots of policy and networking activities.
    5. JRS Biodiversity Foundation: Unsuccessful


  21. External links

  22. No comments

  23. Future meeting dates

  24. Meeting on 18 October in Crete was confirmed.

  25. AOB

  26. None