iDigBio, the National Science Foundation funded National Resource for Advancing Digitization of Biological Collections, is organizing a workshop on specimen digitization to be held on 12 July 2012.  The workshop will occur the day after the Botany 2012 conference.  The workshop is designed to introduce current and future biological and paleontological specimen collections staff to resources and workflows that can lead to greater efficiencies in the digitization of their collections.

Up to 25 participants will be supported by reimbursement of up to $500 to attend the workshop.  Those interested in attending should describe three things in an email:  (1) the status of digitization of biological or paleontological specimens at your institution (including total number of specimens and percent databased, imaged, and georeferenced), (2) your role in digitization of biological or paleontological specimens at your institution, and (3) your degree of interest in presenting a short talk (5-10 minutes) on your experiences with digitization.  It is not necessary for every participant to present a talk, nor is it necessary for all participants to be currently employed as staff at a biological or paleontological specimen collection. Graduate students are particularly encouraged to apply, but a clear connection should be made in the email between your career objectives and the topic of the workshop.  If you are interested in presenting a short talk, please specify the topic of your presentation in <200 words in the email.  Topics could include particularly efficient digitization workflows, ad hoc solutions to digitization bottlenecks, lessons from digitization coordination across multiple institutions, etc.  Further directions regarding reimbursement will be sent to the successful applicants in late March.

Send the email to Cathy Bester via the form at https://www.idigbio.org/contact/Cathy_Bester by 19 March.  Notification of selection by the committee will be made by 23 March.

iDigBio has also organized a symposium entitled “Building a High-Resolution, Specimen-Based Picture of Life: Possibilities and Challenges” for the Botany 2012 conference.  It will be held on the afternoon of Wednesday, 11 July.  More details on the symposium will appear later on the conference website (http://www.2012.botanyconference.org/).