Natural Science Collections Alliance

Our members are part of an international community of museums, botanical gardens, herbariums, universities and other institutions that house natural science collections and utilize them in research, exhibitions, academic and informal science education, and outreach activities.

On the Importance of Scientific Collections

A new series of special reports by NSC Alliance takes an in depth look at scientists and institutions who are using scientific collections. The first two reports in the series were created in partnership with the United States Geological Survey (USGS). One report, “Museum Specimens in the Service of Science: USGS and Smithsonian Partner to Advance Science” features USGS scientists who work at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History. The USGS’ Biological Survey Unit has stored its specimens at the museum since 1889. The second report, “Bees Are Not Optional: To Know How Bees Fare, You Must Know Who They Are” focuses on an effort led by the USGS to create an online identification guide for North American bees.

NSC Alliance members who have suggestions for the topics of other reports for the series should contact Robert Gropp at

To download the reports:

Museum Specimens in the Service of Science
Bees Are Not Optional

On the Importance of Scientific Collections
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