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In the framework of an initiative to advance biodiversity research in Germany, we established three exemplary large-scale and long-term research sites (funded by the German Research Foundation). They are termed Biodiversity Exploratories, in contrast to mainly descriptive observatories. The exploratories sustain the scientific infrastructure to develop the intellectual framework needed to address critical questions about changes in biodiversity and to evaluate the impacts of those changes for ecosystem processes. Thus, in the exploratories biodiversity and ecosystem research will be merged at a large scale and with a long-term perspective. In the first phase 2006-09 the exploratories addressed the relationship between land-use intensity, biodiversity change, and ecosystem functioning for selected taxa. In 2008 the exploratories integrated further contributing projects proposed by the German research community. Thus, the biodiversity exploratories serve as a stimulating research platform for the whole German biodiversity research community. Comprehensive data are collected for about ten years: In the Hainich, in the Swabian Alb and in the Schorfheide scientist examining from all over Germany Biodiversity and analyze ecosystem processes. Computer scientists from the University of Jena now publish first data from the Biodiversity exploratories on internet, to make it so for further research available.
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TERN's AEKOS data portal is the original gateway to Australian ecology data. It is a ‘data and research methods’ data portal for Australia’s land-dwelling plants, animals and their environments. The primary focus of data content is raw co-located ‘species and environment’ ecological survey data that has been collected at the ‘plot’ level to describe biodiversity, its patterns and ecological processes. It is openly accessible with standard discovery metadata and user-oriented, contextual metadata critical for data reuse. Our services support the ecosystem science community, land managers and governments seeking to publish under COPE publishing ethics and the FAIR data publishing principles. AEKOS is registered with Thomson & Reuters Data Citation Index and is a recommended repository of Nature Publishing’s Scientific Data. There are currently 97,037 sites covering mostly plant biodiversity and co-located environmental data of Australia. The AEKOS initiative is supported by TERN (tern.org.au), hosted by The University of Adelaide and funded by the Australian Government’s National Research Infrastructure for Australia.