[tdwg-content] Proposal to create a new DwC term for the class Individual

Steve Baskauf steve.baskauf at vanderbilt.edu
Fri Jan 22 03:31:52 CET 2010

This issue is with reference to 

I have proposed the creation of a new Darwin Core term, Individual, that 
is a class representing individual organisms in their environment (as 
opposed to live organisms in collections which would be Occurrences of 
type LivingSpecimen).  The justification for this new term is given at 
the link above, but to summarize, this class is needed:
1. to establish the concept of an individual (in the sense of the object 
of dwc:individualID) and its relationship to other classes in the TDWG 
2. to provide a way for users who assign a GUID as a value for the dwc 
term individualID to meet Recommendation 11 (regarding GUID typing) of 
the draft TDWG GUID Applicability Statement. 

I should also note that the problem that my proposal is intended to 
resolve may exist for other terms in the new Darwin Core standard that 
can refer to resources that can be identified with GUIDs.  In 
particular, there may be no existing classes in the TDWG ontology
for GUID-labeled resources that are referenced by identificationID 
datasetID, eventID, and locationID .  The lack of an appropriate means 
to type objects identified by GUIDs is only one of the impediments to 
the implementation of GUIDs in the biodiversity community, but it is one 
that can be solved relatively quickly by appropriate action on the part 
of the TDWG technical architecture group.

Steve Baskauf

Steven J. Baskauf, Ph.D., Senior Lecturer
Vanderbilt University Dept. of Biological Sciences

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