NCEAS Project 12193

Data management and analysis tools supporting adaptive management in South African parks

  • Matthew B. Jones
  • O. J. Reichman
  • Mark P. Schildhauer

ActivityDatesFurther Information
Training Workshop28th April—2nd May 2008Participant List  

Kruger National Park is faced with a challenge common to many research stations where dozens of loosely coordinated monitoring and experimental projects are underway at any time. The main challenge is how to effectively collect, present, and preserve this highly variable collection of scientific data for collaborative and integrative analyses. The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation has supported a partnership between Kruger National Park and the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (NCEAS) over the past two years to address this informatics challenge by implementing and refining an approach for archiving KNP's scientific field data using methods developed and tested by NCEAS, the Long Term Ecological Research program, and other partners. The successful deployment of a metadata archive (Metacat) at KNP, along with two successful training workshops in its use, have validated the power and viability of this approach. Kruger National Park is now part of a global "Knowledge Network for Biocomplexity" (KNB), which is based on the use of metadata standards in ecology, particularly Ecological Metadata Language, or "EML" documents that are stored in Metacat database servers. The EML metadata specification is also being used by NCEAS, LTER, the Organization of Biological Field Stations, and the Ecological Society of America, all of which are examples of other major ecological research institutions that are committed to using a common metadata standard for documenting their data. At Kruger, staff and scientists have been trained to use the Morpho metadata and data management application to document their data holdings and upload these to the Kruger data repository (Metacat). This project will: A) expand-this data system to the broader-collection of parks and research stations in South Africa, and B) create the additional analysis infrastructure needed to effectively use these data in adaptive management approaches in the parks.

TypeProduct of NCEAS Research
Journal Article Drury, Kevin; Candelaria, J. Fabian. 2008. Using model identification to analyze spatially explicit data with habitat, and temporal, variability. Ecological Modelling. Vol: 214. Pages 305-315.