GBIF Integrated Publishing Toolkit (IPT) User Manual

The GBIF Integrated Publishing Toolkit (IPT) is a freely available open source web application that makes it easy to share four types of biodiversity-related information:

  1. primary taxon occurrence data

  2. taxon checklists

  3. sampling event data

  4. general metadata about data sources.

An IPT instance as well as the data and metadata registered through the IPT are connected to the GBIF Registry, are indexed for consultation via the GBIF network and portal, and are made accessible for public use. The IPT can also be configured with a DataCite account in order to assign DOIs to datasets transforming it into a data repository. More information about the GBIF IPT can be found at the IPT website.

Founded and funded by governments in 2001, The Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) is the world’s largest multi-lateral initiative for enabling free access to biodiversity data via the Internet. GBIF’s diverse Participants include primarily countries and international organizations. GBIF also has formal partnerships with relevant international treaty bodies. GBIF’s mission is to promote and enable free and open access to biodiversity data worldwide via the Internet to underpin science, conservation and sustainable development. More information about GBIF can be found at GBIF.org.

Several factors have provided motivation for GBIF to lead the development of the IPT:

  • limitations of previous publishing tools (DiGIR, TAPIR, BioCASe) to easily publish and transfer large datasets;

  • the need to reduce the load on both the publisher’s server, and GBIF’s server during indexing. The reason being that indexing from DiGIR, TAPIR, or BioCASe caused heavy loads due to repeated HTTP request-response interactions.

  • the need to speed up the process of indexing biodiversity occurrence datasets;

  • the need to offer additional benefits and services to the data publishers to encourage data publication;

  • the lack of appropriate tools to publish certain types of biodiversity data, such as names checklists and data set metadata.

To understand how the IPT works, try watching this concise 25 minute live demo showing how a dataset gets properly published and registered through GBIF.org.

How to publish biodiversity data through GBIF.org using the IPT

Users

If you’re only interested in trying out the IPT please request an account on the Demo IPT by sending an email to helpdesk@gbif.org.

The simplest way to begin using the IPT is to request a free account on a trusted data hosting centre allowing you to manage your own datasets and publish them through GBIF.org without the hassle of setting up and maintaining the IPT on your own server.

Otherwise if want to setup your own instance of the IPT the Getting Started Guide is your entry point.

Be sure to sign up to the IPT Mailing List, which serves as a support group for IPT users. It is essential that the IPT is kept up to date to be as secure and robust as possible, so if you are responsible for administering an IPT, then you should be signed up to be notified of new releases so that you can update immediately.

Developers

The core development of the IPT is directed by GBIF, but the coding is a community effort and everyone is welcome to join. Start by browsing the Open Issues to find something that you’d like to start working on. Kindly note that contributions are welcome in the form of a pull request using a branch or fork of the repository. Full instructions aimed at developers can be found here.

Translators

The IPT user interface and manual both need internationalization, but it’s a community effort and everyone is welcome to join. Full instructions aimed at translators can be found here.

Thanks to an enormous community effort, and by leveraging the power of the Crowdin localization tool, the user interface has already been translated into seven different languages: English, French, Spanish, Traditional Chinese, Brazilian Portuguese, Japanese, and Russian.

Acknowledgements

A large number of dedicated volunteers contribute to the success of this software. With your help, the IPT has become a successful tool in use all around the world.

Crowdin is kindly supporting this open source project by giving GBIF a free access to its localization management platform. Crowdin makes it possible to manage a large number of concurrent translations.