Launched in January, 2011, the Network is intended to be a forum (a meeting place) to facilitate and promote world-class research and training in taxonomy and the biodiversity sciences.
It is particularly targeted at helping a new generation of taxonomists/ biodiversity specialists, who may be working in relative isolation in various parts of the Old World tropics or in universities and museums in the West.
The Network offers an opportunity for such students and scientists to become part of a wider international scientific community and to exchange ideas and collaborate in a broad range of research and training projects.
Therefore the aims of the network are to:
- encourage taxonomic/biodiversity research in Africa, Arabia, and Asia and facilitate national, regional, and international research collaboration [more details]
- promote the exchange of ideas and inter-institutional training programmes in taxonomy and the biodiversity sciences
- provide greater access to biodiversity literature, especially that relating to taxonomy [more details]
- facilitate inter-institutional loans of specimens [more details]
- host regional/international taxonomic/biodiversity workshops and conferences [more details]
Jointly founded by the Harrison Institute in the United Kingdom and the Prince of Songkla University in Thailand and supported by the Darwin Initiative, the Network was initially designed to promote collaborative research and training in Cambodia, Lao PDR, and Thailand.
However, it has subsequently expanded to include those with an interest in taxonomy and biodiversity throughout the Old World tropics and subtropics and today includes an expanding group of individuals from universities, museums, and research institutes in Africa, Arabia, Asia as well as those in Europe, North America and elsewhere internationally [current list].
The Network is open to anyone with an interest in taxonomy and biodiversity but new members are expected to abide by the core principals of the group, which is that collaboration is for:
- the mutual benefit of all involved
- the advancement of knowledge of Afro-Asian biodiversity
- the provision of data and advice that will ultimately promote wildlife conservation in the Old World tropics and subtropics.
Currently, most members of the Network are interested in vertebrates, particularly mammals, birds, and herps but in the future this will be expanded to include all aspects of biodiversity.