Building an Encyclopedia of Life
August 20, 2009 | From the field | Conservation & Sustainable Development

Now two years old, the Encyclopedia of Life (EOL), an ambitious effort to create a web page for every known living species, offers public access to more than 150,000 species pages with expert-verified information. Experts and citizen-scientists have fueled the project's progress, uploading more than 30,000 images and videos. To build on that progress, MacArthur, one of EOL's earliest supporters, is committing an additional $10 million to the project.

"Creating a single portal to access a web page for each of the 1.8 million known species will provide a powerful tool to assist researchers and policymakers in better understanding biodiversity and discerning patterns of plant and animal behavior," said MacArthur Vice President Arthur Sussman. "By integrating and consolidating information on species, EOL also has the potential to accelerate scientific discovery and serve as an infrastructure for life sciences research."

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