Under the title Days of Biodiversity 2020, the ABOL meeting took place this year together with the 3rd Austrian Forum on Biodiversity & Ecosystem Services as an online event.
During the pre-phase, various topics were discussed in workshops, the results of which, together with other interesting lectures, were presented in the Biodiversity Forum on December 4th.
The last day of the event was dedicated to the ABOL meeting. With – as usual – quite diverse contributions regarding organisms and methods, the 7th annual meeting gave an impressive overview of the various activities within the initiative. The national networks were further strengthened through the exchange beyond the individual areas of interest. The online format also gave the conference more international visibility. We are very pleased that Dr. Katrin Vohland, Director General of the Natural History Museum Vienna, opened the ABOL meeting and underlined the important role of her institition in national and international biodiversity agendas. She also emphasized the importance of participating in EU-wide initiatives such as DiSSCo (Distributed System of Scientific Collections) and the EOSC (European Open Science Cloud) in Austria. The the morning session was devoted to the activities in ABOL and GBOL. We would like to thank our colleagues from GBOL for their interesting keynote on the recently launched Dark Taxa project, which will be of importance for many activities throughout Europe and not least ABOL will benefit from it. At the end of the morning session, Dr. Karolina Begusch-Pfefferkorn from the Federal Ministry of Science (BMBWF) gave a first insights into the European Partnerships in Horizon Europe, a very promising initiative. The afternoon sessions with a total of 13 flash talks were dedicated to a wide variety of DNA barcoding projects and applications. Covering a broad range of topices and geography they were met with great interest.
The almost 190 registrations for the Zoom-Meeting exceeded all previous ABOL meetings and the sessions were equally well attended!
We would like to thank all speakers, all participants, our sponsors and especially Heidi Weinhäupl and the organizing team of the Days of Biodiversity 2020 at the DonauUni Krems for the great cooperation!
Your ABOL coordination team