Dr. Rainer W. Bussmann, Head and Curator for Economic Botany, William L. Brown Center for Plant Genetic Resources
Steven Skoczen, Quantum Imagery, Cornell University
Today, there are a few primary repositories for Ethnobotanical data, including the University of Riverside’s Ethnobotany Database, Dr. Duke’s Databases, and NAPRALERT, and several more specialized databases. Each of these systems fills a valuable role, but each also has shortcomings in accessibility and use in international applications.
The International Ethnobotany Database (ebDB) is a new, public database that fills in the existing gaps in functionality, and provides a standardized, secure, independent, and non-commercial repository for ethnobotanical data. In this system, individual researchers maintain complete control over the access to their data, and can choose to keep it completely private, or securely share the information with selected colleagues. The database is fully multilingual, and supports translation, data entry, and viewing for any language. Most importantly, the database is open to any researcher to add new data, datasets, and languages.
Built over six years of field research in Perú, the ebDB contains a broad feature-set, and is designed specifically for ethnobotanical research. It is fully multilingual, has a glossary, more than 20 categories of data, complete location information, strong searching, and data export features.
Currently, the database houses data from Ecuador, Perú, Kenya and Hawai’i. It is the hope of this project that the ebDB becomes an international standard for storing ethnobotanical data.
To access ebDB, click here.