Publish or Perish? Linking Scratchpads and the new Biodiversity Data Journal for streamlining publication of botanical data
Data relevant to the study of plant taxonomy and biodiversity are being produced at an ever-increasing rate. Most of them are valuable primary data generated in the context of small projects mostly by local communities or individual researchers. Local floristic studies, single nomenclatural acts, small taxonomic treatments, morphological and ecological datasets or novel occurrence records constitute the vital building stones in the study of plant biodiversity. However, in the absence of a wider context or due to the time-consuming nature of manuscript writing, these data are rarely published. They remain hidden, constituting a big part of the ‘dark data’ concept. This prevents researchers from taking credit for their work but also deprives the scientific community of re-usable and invaluable data. The taxonomic community needs tools that facilitate and accelerate the process of entering, structuring, curating and publishing biodiversity. In this talk we will demonstrate how the interlinking between a Virtual Research Environment (Scratchpads) and an open-access next generation journal (Biodiversity Data Journal) can streamline the taxonomic and biodiversity publication process. Through successful case studies we will further illustrate how this interplay enables researchers to achieve fast dissemination of their results and gain greater exposure for their data.