Distributed European School of Taxonomy (DEST)

Photo credits: Thierry Hubin

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DEST transfers knowledge between current and future generations of taxonomists by providing high quality education and prepares students for future taxonomic careers. It was established by prominent taxonomists and other international partners during the CETAF initiative EDIT, an EU-funded project.

Within CETAF, training is central to building capacity within our community. It is a means for the 5000 scientists from across our institutions to share expertise and learn from each other. Our members  are involved in an increasing number of training programmes in different areas related to taxonomy, taxonomic research and natural history collections.

The Distributed European School of Taxonomy (DEST) offers education and training opportunities to students and professionals from any nationality studying, working or interested in the field of taxonomy, biodiversity, geodiversity and conservation.

DEST activities aim to improve the flow of knowledge between students and scientists and raise awareness of our field within society at large by opening up access to taxonomic expertise and information.

Training opportunities are offered by CETAF or by our member institutions and other partners within the framework of CETAF activities or initiatives.

Training programes  on 3 focus areas covering different aspects of biodiversity research:


DEST partners
Ana Casino

Ana Casino

CETAF Executive Director
Frédéric Legendre

Frédéric Legendre

Professor associate
Thierry Backeljau

Thierry Backeljau

Head of Operational Directorate – RBINS
Catherina Voreadou

Catherina Voreadou

Head of Education & Hydrobiology Lab NHMC
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Tjitske Sijbrandij

Senior Policy Officer
Hugo de Boer

Hugo de Boer

DEST coordinator
Maarten Van Steenberge

Maarten Van Steenberge

DEST manager

DEST was established within the framework of the EU-funded project “European Distributed Institute of Taxonomy (EDIT)” (2006-2011). It currently sits under the umbrella of the Consortium of European Taxonomic Facilities (CETAF).

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    The DEST consortium is open to new members to share their experience to improve the knowledge base and foster the direct involvement of CETAF  community in providing the highest-level quality of training and to reach out the broadest audience possible.

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