Accessing biodiversity data through web services

Date: April 30th 2019, 12.00-16.00

Place: Gothenburg Global Biodiversity Center, Carl Skottsbergs gata 22B, Gothenburg, Room 6 (Sal 6)

Description: The workshop ‘Accessing biodiversity data through web services‘ will focus on automated ways of retrieving and processing biodiversity data from public databases. We will mostly be working in the R programming environment and introduce common R-packages and functions to retrieve publication-quality (DOI-assigned) species occurrence data from the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF). Further we will cover the most important steps of data cleaning and filtering, including taxonomic filtering to account for the variation of species name synonyms and misspellings using the package taxise. The tutorial will also include common approaches to download occurrences of a larger taxonomic group, such as a family or order. Finally we will cover fancy plotting options to best display the retrieved biodiversity data, including plotting on interactive maps.

Course teachers: Tobias Andermann, Matthias Obst

Recommended background: Basic R knowledge required

Course level: PhD level (motivated Master’s students welcome)

Food: Lunch will be provided for all course participants

Application: Send a short motivation (5 lines stating goals and expectations) to latest by 23rd April 2019.

Contact: Tobias Andermann (, Matthias Obst (