Following up on the topics of access and benefit sharing, permits, legal and rights-based principles, fundamentally these touch on ethical questions. In this consultation, this topic so far seems to be missing or at least doesn’t have its own thread.
A such extensive endeavor as implementing the DS/ES concepts in an integrated global biodiversity infrastructure should be accompanied by a group of experts, stakeholders and interested biodiversity scientists, who address ethical issues of data sharing and publishing.
Earlier this year, the results of a large cancer consortium were published, including a comment describing and discussing their ethical considerations and strategies:
Phillipsetal2020.pdf (383.9 KB) We might learn from the problems that they encountered and adapt some of the solutions that they found.
Taking ethical considerations in a biodiversity context one step further, in my opinion, the collections community should arrive at taking a multispecies ethics stance, see eg. van Dooren et al_2016.pdf (461.5 KB)
Pragmatically, we need a clear set of values, which forms the basis for our communications and interactions with the public and from which we can develop arguments, why our actions as collection-based community are not destroying what we want to protect and conserve.
A colleague recently entered the need for such values into the strategy discussions of SPNHC’s Biodiversity Crisis Response Committee. She connected them with principles and values developed by the animal research community, eg. the 3 R’s: replace, reduce, and refine.
The FAIR principles are very close to research data. However, there is a continuous connection and it’s only a couple of short steps from them to more philosophical or very practical (eg. legal) ethical considerations. Ethical considerations and objectives should be consciously integrated into the development of a global biodiversity data infrastructure.