Western Ghats Portal / India Biodiversity Portal

Investigator(s): Dr. B.R. Ramesh, Mr. D. Balasubramanian
Start date: November 2010
Axis 4. of the Ecology Department /

The Western Ghats, a mountainous ridge running parallel to the west coast of India’s ancient peninsula, has a rich and intriguing history. The Western Ghats Portal seeks to provide a platform for aggregating diverse information on the biodiversity of the Western Ghats.

The Western Ghats Portal has now been incorporated within the larger India Biodiversity Portal (IBP) – A repository of information designed to harness and disseminate collective intelligence on the biodiversity of the Indian subcontinent.

This portal aims to provide open source data on biodiversity in India. It is designed to harness collective knowledge, seek voluntary participation of users and establish a participatory platform for content generation, verification and usage. The Portal aims to facilitate and enable widespread participation by all citizens in contributing and accessing information on Indian biodiversity, that benefits science and society, contributes to a sustainable future; and guides the development and use of this Portal.

The portal is expected to be of interest to researchers, hobbyists, professionals, naturalists, policy makers, activists, educators and students, as well as the curious citizen. The success of this portal depends on participation and its usefulness as a storehouse of information on the biodiversity of India. In due course we will have sufficient data, based on widespread participation, to provide information on the occurrence and distribution of species across India.

Materials and methods:

The IBP intends to aggregate biodiversity information for public good, by leveraging Web and providing easy open access to this wealth of information. The portal intends to mobilize a collaborative community that will build high-quality spatial and species based information on India’s biodiversity.

The portal is work in progress and adheres to the philosophy of the perpetual beta. The portal currently has the following modules; maps, species pages, citizen science, documents and the groups infrastructure.

The portal is managed by a collective of around 17 organisations which form the IBP consortium.

External team members:
  • Prabhakar R, Director, Strand Life Sciences
  • Thomas Vattakaven, Microbiologist, Strand Life Sciences
Main outputs:

– The web portal is a growing database which currently has over 10,000 observations from the Western Ghats, along with a constantly growing number of species pages, maps and documents.

– Oral presentations at various international and national events such as TDWG, SCCS, Yeti and other forums.