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A note on CWR data management in conservation planning

CWR conservation planning (along with the development of National Strategic Action Plans (NSAP)  [1] for the conservation and utilization of CWR) involves significant data collation, analysis and management (see Figure below).

1. CWR checklist  [2] – normally a simple table of the Latin names of the CWR taxa present in the country. Iin order to prioritize CWR for active conservation further information for each CWR might be neded (to know more about annotated checklists, click here  [3]), in which case the checklist will consist of a list of Latin names of CWR taxa together with relevant data.

2. CWR inventory  [4] – normally a list of a subset of the taxa in the checklist that have been identified as priority. The inventory will also include the prioritization information from the annotated checklist and further relevant information associated with each priority CWR taxon. A CWR checklist and inventory template is currently being developed which will facilitate the compilation of CWR checklists and inventories.

3. Diversity and gap analyses – the CWR checklist and inventory are primarily taxon-based, but diversity analyses of priority CWR are based largely on data associated with individual occurrences and genetic data that represent those taxa. Normally significant resources are invested in the collation of large occurrence datasets and these can be collated into the Occurrence Data Collation Template  [5].

4. CWR conservation management and monitoring – the data associated with management and monitoring varies depending on whether it is associated with in situ or ex situ conservation. However, in general it falls into three basic categories: in situ populations (in situ population, conservation status and actions etc.), ex situ accessions (passport data, curation data, characterization and evaluation data) and both in situ  [6] and ex situ  [7].

5. Promotion of use – CWR conservation should be directly linked to utilization. Characterization and evaluation data (mentioned in the previous point) are of extreme importance so that potential users have some basis on which to select the accessions they wish to utilize. The data associated with characterization and evaluation is often lacking and is seldom available to the user community. In Europe, the web-enabled European Cooperative Programme for Plant Genetic Resources (ECPGR) Central Crop Databases  [8] hold passport data and, to varying degrees, characterization and primary evaluation data of the major crop-related collections in Europe.

Summary of data flow in CWR conservation planning.

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