Prometheus II: Capturing and Relating Character Concept Definitions in Plant Taxonomy

  Taxonomy has been described as “the science of documenting biodiversity”, which involves collecting, naming, describing, identifying and classifying specimens of organisms. Descriptions are the fundamental information units used in the process of constructing classifications and communicating taxonomic concepts. The quality of stored description data is limited by the lack of a formal model and methodology for composing specimen descriptions, and by the absence of an agreed defined terminology. This impedes the communication, interpretation and reuse of original descriptions. Prometheus is developing a novel approach to composing and recording taxonomic descriptions of botanical specimens. An underlying model for creating character descriptions has been developed together with a process for creating an ontology of defined terms, which will be used to compose these description elements. It is hoped that these developments will facilitate the unambiguous interpretation of descriptions and enhance the taxonomic process.

  • Start Date:

    1 February 2001

  • End Date:

    30 June 2004

  • Activity Type:


  • Funder:

    Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council

  • Value:


Project Team