CETAF Events

CETAF, its Members and the worldwide taxonomic community are active players who organise many events of international relevance, in very wide variety of platforms and formats, including from conferences and lectures, seminars, workshops and training courses.

In addition, and complementing the range of events geared towards specialist scientists and policy makers, natural science, exhibitions of natural history and botany are keystone events that help disseminate science and knowledge of nature among the general public. In fact, exhibitions underline the necessity for the global society to commit and engage with science .

The Events presented here are classified into three different categories:

1. Exhibitions, which focus on current relevant issues, that are of interest and aim to motivate the general audience to get increasingly involved with the scientific process, and act upon its discoveries.

2. Trainings, that comprise all actions under which capacity and expertise are built, including seminars and workshops, among others.

3. Conferences, a generic identifier for all types of public sessions and meetings, on a certain subject, either accessible to an open audience, or restricted to a certain number of registered participants.

A fourth category of events, the General Assembly of CETAF, takes place twice per year and is exclusively restricted to CETAF Members and their staff.

The events below highlight the importance of our scientific work and its connection and synergies with other related fields. Please find below the event of your interest, in chronological order, within the field of taxonomy, systematic biology, and related disciplines.


  • Safeguarding Biodiversity Data for the Future

    27th Feb, 2018 to 28th Feb, 2018
    Event type 

    The conference & workshop of the "Saving Freshwater Biodiversity Research Data" project will take place at the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences on Tuesday 27th & Wednesday 28th February 2018.

    During this conference, the organises specifically aim to share the lessons learned from the project "Saving Freshwater Biodiversity Research Data" and put their work in a broader perspective. Three keynote speakers will provide their view on working with large datasets, the need for Open Data and Open Science.

    • Jonathan Chase from the German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv) will share insights from his work on biodiversity synthesis.
    • Jörg Freyhof based at the Leibniz-Institute of Freshwater Ecology and Inland Fisheries (IGB) will offer a global perspective on biodiversity observation data based on his experience in working on the EU BioFresh project and the Group on Earth Observation Biodiversity Observation Network (GEO BON).
    • Julia Steward Lowndes from the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (NCEAS) will present a strong case for Open Science sharing the story of building the Ocean Health Index.

    The workshop on Biodiversity Data Management represents an excellent opportunity to get guidance and learn simple tricks to improve your day-to-day data management. In the afternoon, we give an introduction into biodiversity data standardisation and publication and offer the opportunity to choose between hands-on data transformation exercise and working with microbial ecology data. This workshop is higly recommended for students and researchers looking to improve their data management skills.

    Get inspired and learn what you can do for "Safeguarding Biodiversity Data for the Future" during our conference on February 27th and workshop on February 28th! Register at: https://goo.gl/forms/NX8Ao1B5ACoV7Hef1

    You can find the full program here: SAFRED program draft November 2017.




    Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences
    Rue Vautier 29
  • ICEDIG Opening Conference – Transforming natural sciences collections for the digital age

    06th Mar, 2018
    Event type 



    Hosted by the Finnish Museum of Natural History Luomus, the consortium of the Horizon 2020 ICEDIG project “Innovation and consolidation for large scale digitisation of natural heritage” invites stakeholders to participate in the ICEDIG Opening Conference, titled "Transforming natural sciences collections for the digital age".

    ICEDIG is an EU-funded project that supports DiSSCo, the new pan-European Research Infrastructure initiative with the vision to position European natural science collections at the centre of data-driven scientific excellence and innovation in environmental research. In combination, these projects will help tackle the complex challenge of digitising natural science collections and providing access to collections data by addressing the technical, financial, policy and governance aspects necessary to operate DiSSCo.

    Addressing today’s global environmental challenges requires access to significant quantities of data. This holds especially true for the natural sciences, where one rich data trove remains unearthed: The European scientific collections. These jointly hold more than 1.5 billion objects, representing 80% of the world’s bio- and geo-diversity. With only 10 % of these objects digitised, their information remains vastly underused, thus impeding potential applications of this critical scientific resource. To help tackle the complex challenge of digitising natural science collections and providing access to collections data, the community of European natural science institutions has submitted a proposal for a new ESFRI Research Infrastructure, the Distributed System of Scientific Collections (DiSSCo). DiSSCo will enable critical new insights to address some of the world's greatest challenges, such as biodiversity loss and climate change, by providing access to linked scientific data at a scale, and with a level of precision and accuracy that has never been achieved before. 

    Conference objectives:

    • Introduce the ICEDIG project and familiarise stakeholders with the work programme
    • Share the mission and vision of DiSSCo and highlight how ICEDIG contributes to its preparation
    • Reach out to stakeholders and engage them in the co-development of innovative solutions to support the mass digitisation of natural science collections
    • Discuss the issues and challenges of mass-digitisation, sharing cutting-edge information


    The consortium would like to seize the opportunity to build long lasting relationships with representatives from potential industrial partners, national and European political bodies, the research community and society. At the conference the parters of the project consortium will present the ICEDIG work programme and show how the wide group of stakeholders can contribute but also how to benefit from the project and its results.

    The event is being organised in close proximity to the Di­gital Hu­man­it­ies in the Nor­dic Coun­tries Conference, taking place on the 7-9 March 2018, also in Helsinki, to showcase the potential collaborations between the two domains.




    ICEDIG – Opening Conference

    “Transforming natural sciences collections for the digital age”



    Place: Helsinki, Finland

    Venue: Economicum (Arkadiankatu, 7)

    Dates: 6 March 2018 (Tuesday)

    Local Hosts: University of Helsinki, Finnish Museum of Natural History Luomus

    Attendance: Open and free of charge



    09:00 – 09:10 WELCOME

    09:10 – 10:40 SETTING THE SCENE 

    Convenor: Aino Juslén - NaturalHistoryMuseum LUOMUS

    1. Introducing ICEDIG - Leif Schulman / Kari Lahti / Hannu Saarenmaa (Natural History Museum LUOMUS – University of Helsinki)

    2. The vision and the frame for ICEDIG: DiSSCo Research Infrastructure - Dimitris Koureas (Naturalis Biodiversity Centre)

    3. National digitisation initiatives: The French e-ReColNat Project - François Dusoulier (Muséum d'histoire naturelle de Toulon et du Var)

    4. Mass-digitisation in the US thematic collections network - Deborah Paul (iDigBio – Integrated Digitized Biocollections)


    10:40 – 11:00 Coffee break


    11:00 – 12:30 PROMOTING INNOVATION

    Convenor:  Jeroen Bloothoofd (Picturae BV)

    1. Semantic Web meets biology: Finnish experiences in modelling, managing, and using biological linked data - Eero Hyvönen (Aalto University and the HELDIG Programme)

    2. Perspectives for combining 3D and mass-digitisation - Marc Hereld (Mathematics and Computer Science Division, Argonne National Laboratory, Argonne, Illinois)

    3. Crowd Sourcing Initiatives: Mark my Bird - Gavin Thomas (Department of Animal and Plant Sciences, The University of Sheffield)

    4. Big data archiving and publication – the Zenodo experience - Tim Smith (CERN)


    12:30 – 13:30  Lunch break



    Convenor:  Vince Smith (NaturalHistoryMuseum, London)

    1. Biodiversity data in the information age. The GBIF Biodiversity Outlook - Andrea Hahn (GBIF)

    2. Collections land in the Data Commons - Benefits for science - Arturo Ariño (University of Navarra)

    3. Using biodiversity data for predictions. The case of PREDICTS - Adriana de Palma (Natural History Museum London)


    14:30 – 14:40  Coffee Break


    14:40 – 15:50  PANEL DISCUSSION: “Building DiSSCo together”

    In this panel, experts and stakeholders discuss collaborative ways to build DiSSCo by pairing up their joint knowledge and services.


    15:50 – 16:00  WRAP UP





    Arkadiankatu, 7
  • DHN 2018 - Di­gital Hu­man­it­ies in the Nor­dic Coun­tries

    07th Mar, 2018 to 09th Mar, 2018
    Event type 


    The 3rd conference of the Association of Digital Humanities in the Nordic Countries (DHN) will be held at the University of Helsinki March 7–9, 2018. The conference is organised by HELDIG – the Helsinki Centre for Digital Humanities at the University of Helsinki, the Faculty of Arts.

    In 2018, the conference seeks to extend the scope of digital humanities research covered, both into new areas, as well as beyond the Nordic and Baltic countries. This year, the conference welcomes in particular work related to the following themes: History, Cultural Heritage, Games, and Future.

    The overarching theme this year is Open Science. This pragmatic concept emphasises the role of transparent and reproducible research practices, open dissemination of results, and new forms of collaboration, all greatly facilitated by digitalisation. All proposals are invited to reflect on the benefits, challenges, and prospects of open science for their own research.

    Cleck here for further information about the conference.


    University of Helsinki
  • Innovation and Cultural Heritage - High-level Horizon 2020 conference of The European Year of Cultural Heritage

    20th Mar, 2018
    Event type 


    The high-level Horizon 2020 conference – organised by the European Commission Directorate General for Research and Innovation, in close cooperation with Directorates General for Education and Culture and for Communications Networks, Content and Technology – will showcase the dialogue between contemporary European society and the most promising innovations in the field of Cultural Heritage that European policies and funds have supported.

    The conference is part of the programme of the European Year of Cultural Heritage and will contribute to its legacy by launching the public discussion about the objectives of European research and innovation policy for Cultural Heritage beyond 2020.

    The policy round-tables and scientific sessions of the conference will highlight policy, social, technological, methodological innovations and new, promising partnerships for Cultural Heritage. The speakers – leading European politicians, museum curators and scientists – of the conference will discuss policy developments, success stories and future challenges.


    Royal Museum of Arts and History
    Parc du Cinquantenaire 10
  • Research Infrastructures beyond 2020 – sustainable and effective ecosystem for science and society

    22nd Mar, 2018 to 23rd Mar, 2018
    Event type 
    Register by 
    Saturday, 10 March, 2018

    Building an effective, sustainable and inclusive European Research Infrastructure (RI) ecosystem is one of the key elements for the development and improvement of knowledge and technology and for the overall competitiveness of our continent. In particular, Research Infrastructures are important hubs for generating new knowledge and training highly skilled human capital.

    Long-term sustainability of Research Infrastructures has been repeatedly highlighted as one of the main challenges for the overall research and innovation system in Europe. Overcoming this challenge will depend on a common understanding and agreement among policy-makers at all levels and research managers, as well as the industrial stakeholders.

    The overall objective of the conference is to reflect on the Staff Working Documents, explore and discuss a concrete set of actions to foster sustainability and impact of European research infrastructures on industry, policy and society. The outcome of this high-level event will be a European Call for Action on Long-term Sustainability of Research Infrastructures to provide the impetus for full realisation of the potential of the European Research Area in order to further boost broad-based research and innovation. The Call for Action will therefore foster long-term competitiveness and excellence of the RIs in Europe and world-wide.
    The conference will be divided into three main blocks:
    1. Background and the main challenges - This block will include opening addresses and a keynote speech on the main challenges for European RIs.
    2. Key elements for the Action Plan - This block will consist of three sessions focused on the key issues to be addressed in the Action Plan. The first session will focus on the synchronisation of RI policies at different levels, including, among others, national roadmaps, coordination of investments, dedicated RI budgets, co-funding mechanisms, etc. The second session will explore synergies, including complementarity of the different EU funding sources and mechanisms, opportunities for collaboration of RIs in different domains and of different size, transnational access to RIs, etc. The third session would focus on RIs as hubs of innovation, including opportunities for collaboration with industry, innovative services, digital skills, user involvement strategies, educational role of RIs, etc. This session will be followed by dedicated activities at the exhibition, focusing on achieving an impact.
    3. The European Call for Action - This session will include a political panel which will conclude the conference and present the European Call for Action on Long-term sustainability of RIs.

    Further information is available on the event website. There you also have access to the conference programme and the registration form




    John Atanasoff Innovation Forum - Sofia Tech Park
    Blvd “Tsarigradsko shose” 111 B
  • Plants in a changing world - The 4th Annual Meeting on Plant Ecology and Evolution (AMPEE4)

    23rd Mar, 2018
    Event type 

    The global environment is changing, the climate is warming, there are more extreme weather events, human activity has altered geochemical cycles of nutrients and land use change reduces and fragments habitats. How will plants adapt? How can we conserve those at risk of extinction and how can we adapt our management of plant communities? These questions and more will be addressed at the 4th Annual Meeting on Plant Ecology and Evolution.

    The meeting will take place on Friday the 23th of March 2018 in the Botanic Garden Meise. We particularly encourage young researchers to participate, but everyone is welcome. The Annual Meeting is an open and friendly event where you can promote your research to a wide range of plant scientists. AMPEE is an initiative of the Royal Botanical Society of Belgium and the Botanic Garden Meise, who also collectively publish the journal Plant Ecology and Evolution.

    The theme this year is “Plants in a changing world” with keynote lectures from Daniel Kissling (Associate Professor for Quantitative Biodiversity Science at the Institute for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Dynamics (IBED), University of Amsterdam) and Sandrine Godefroid (Botanic Garden Meise).

    On Twitter #AMPEE4


    -Invited Keynote lectures

    -Oral presentations selected from submitted abstracts

    -Poster session with a 2 minutes lightning talks.

    Awards: Best poster, judged on design, clarity and novelty.


    Everyone must register in order to attend the meeting. The registration fee is 10 euro and includes a printed program, with abstracts and, coffee and lunch.

    The registration fee is payable upon arrival at the meeting.




    Domaine de Bouchout Nieuwelaan 38
  • European Geosciences Union General Assembly 2018

    08th Apr, 2018 to 13th Apr, 2018
    Event type 
    General Assembly


    The EGU General Assembly 2018 will bring together geoscientists from all over the world to one meeting covering all disciplines of the Earth, planetary and space sciences. The EGU aims to provide a forum where scientists, especially early career researchers, can present their work and discuss their ideas with experts in all fields of geoscience. 


    Austria Center Vienna (ACV)
    Bruno-Kreisky-Platz 1
  • CETAF 43 General Assembly

    25th Apr, 2018 to 26th Apr, 2018
    Event type 
    General Assembly


    The 43th CETAF General Assembly will take place on 25-26 April at the Natural History Museum in London, UK. 

    More information will follow soon.


    Natural History Museum of London
    Cromwell Road
    SW7 5BD
    United Kingdom
  • NatSCA Conference & AGM 2018: The museum ecosystem: exploring how different subject specialisms can work closer together

    26th Apr, 2018 to 27th Apr, 2018
    Event type 

    This conference aims to lead the participants outside their comfort zone and explore how working closely with different disciplines and departments can not only strengthen own areas of expertise, but museums as a whole. The museum ecosystem is vast and not limited to just museums as it includes universities, local organisations, funding bodies, artists, communities and many other stakeholders.

    Leeds City Museum
    United Kingdom
  • WCMB 2018: World Conference on Marine Biodiversity

    13th May, 2018 to 16th May, 2018
    Event type 


    The World Conference on Marine Biodiversity (WCMB) has become the major focal assembly to share research outcomes, management and policy issues, and discussions on the role of biodiversity in sustaining ocean ecosystems. Arranged on a 3 - 4 year cycle, prior WCMB meetings (Valencia, Spain; Aberdeen, Scotland; Qingdao, China) have each attracted leading specialists from around the world, and catalyzed numerous sidebar sessions on marine biodiversity issues. 

    The 4th World Conference on Marine Biodiversity will be held at the Palais des congrès de Montréal, Québec, Canada, from May 13-16, 2018. This meeting will bring together scientists, practitioners, and policy makers to discuss and advance our understanding of the importance and current state of biodiversity in the marine environment. Through a mix of keynote sessions, contributed talks and posters, and bookable venues for focused meetings, the conference program will address marine biodiversity across a deliberately wide range of relevant sectors. Participation will be encouraged from the broadest possible range of stakeholder groups from academics to industry.

    The 4th WCMB will ‘connect’ scientists with decision and policy makers, NGOs and industry in order to:


    • Review current knowledge of marine biodiversity and its role in marine ecosystem function and services;
    • Assess past, present, and future critical threats to marine systems and consider management strategies;
    • Encourage inter-disciplinary discussions among researchers, policy makers, NGOs and industry;
    • Discuss sustainable development in the context of biodiversity;
    • Identify future research and policy priorities


    Click here for more information about WCMB 2018.


    Palais des Congrès de Montréal
    1001 Jean Paul Riopelle Pl
    H2Z 1H5
    Montreal, Québec