In 2021, the NSC Alliance engaged in a number of efforts to elevate the profile of natural history collections with policymakers, researchers, and the general public. A few highlights are presented below:
- NSC Alliance President John Bates, Treasurer Jen Zaspel, Board Member Barbara Thiers, Executive Director Jyotsna Pandey, and colleagues co-authored a BioScience Viewpoint article stemming from a joint discussion co-organized by NSC Alliance, AIBS, and SPNHC between the Biodiversity Collections Network (BCoN) and the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine on the future of biological collections.
- We partnered with the American Institute of Biological Sciences and other sibling societies to organize an NSF-funded international workshop series to raise awareness about international policy discussions on access and benefit sharing of digital sequence information; co-hosted a workshop on emerging pathogen research across the Americas that included participation of former NSC Alliance President Joe Cook and colleagues.
- NSC Alliance provided congressional testimony in support of increased fiscal year 2022 federal funding for NSF, programs that curate natural history collections within the Department of the Interior, and Smithsonian Institution.
- We secured incorporation of biological collections more explicitly in the Interagency Arctic Research Policy Committee’s Arctic Research Plan (2022-2026).