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Abstract Detail

Education and Outreach

Barkworth, Mary [1].

Building A Biodiversity Program in Somaliland: a progress report.

Somaliland lies along the south coast of the Gulf of Aden. It is known to have high species diversity and endemism for many organismal groups, including plants, and some areas have been identified as being Important Biodiversity Areas. The work involved, however, has been done by foreigners and the specimens documenting its biodiversity are housed in foreign institutions. If this is to change, there must be opportunities to acquire the necessary education and training and a biodiversity museum in Somaliland. In 2015, some colleagues and I formed the Somaliland Biodiversity Foundation (SBF), to help develop such resources in collaboration with the Somaliland Ministry of Environment and Rural Development, Candlelight for Environment, Education, and Health, and the University of Hargeisa, the largest public university in Somaliland. Since then, SBF has initiated a Biodiversity Museum at the University of Hargeisa, offered workshops on documenting biodiversity in a digital age, and started developing collaborations in Somaliland that will aid in achievement of the primary goal, enabling Somaliland’s citizens to learn how to study, document, monitor, and promote conservation of the country’s biodiversity without leaving the country. Our primary foci are 1) building the museum so that it can support research, education, and outreach; 2) enabling the University of Hargeisa to offer respected degree programs in the biodiversity sciences; 3) and building a teaching/research laboratory at the University of Hargeisa. The talk will summarize the progress made, the immediate goals, and the challenges in developing degree programs in the biodiversity sciences in a country where there is almost no tradition of systematics.

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Related Links:
Web site of the Somaliland Biodiversity Foundation
Where herbarium records are being shared for HARG, the herbarium of the University of Hargeisa
Website for sharing records of animal occurrences

1 - Utah State University, Department Of Biology, 5305 OLD MAIN HILL, Logan, UT, 84322-5305, USA


Presentation Type: Oral Paper
Session: 18, Education and Outreach I
Location: Sundance 4/Omni Hotel
Date: Tuesday, June 27th, 2017
Time: 8:00 AM
Number: 18001
Abstract ID:241
Candidate for Awards:None

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