Towards the bibliography of life

TitleTowards the bibliography of life
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2011
AuthorsKing, David, David Morse, Alistair Willis, and Anton Dil
Date Publishednov

This paper discusses how we intend to take forward the vision of a Bibliography of Life in the {ViBRANT} project. The underlying principle of the Bibliography is to provide taxonomists and others with a freely accessible bibliography covering the whole of life. Such a bibliography has been achieved for specific study areas within taxonomy, but not for “life” as a {whole.The} creation of such a comprehensive tool has been hindered by various social and technical issues. The social concerns focus on the willingness of users to contribute to the Bibliography. The technical concerns relate to the architecture required to deliver the Bibliography. These issues are discussed in the paper and approaches to addressing them within the {ViBRANT} project are described, to demonstrate how we can now seriously consider building a Bibliography of Life. We are particularly interested in the potential of the resulting tool to improve the quality of bibliographic references. Through analysing the large number of references in the Bibliography we will be able to add metadata by resolving known issues such as geographical name variations. This should result in a tool that will assist taxonomists in two ways. Firstly, it will be easier for them to discover relevant literature, especially pre-digital literature; and secondly, it will be easier for them to identify the canonical form for a {citation.The} paper also covers related issues relevant to building the tool in {ViBRANT}, including implementation and copyright, with suggestions as to how we could address them.