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Welcome to the NCD web

Welcome to the home of NCD. This web-based collaboration area (wiki) is used for discussions of the NCD Subgroup of the Biodiversity Information Standards (TDWG).

If you are new to wikis, learn how to use it in ThreeEasySteps. This wiki is open to anyone interested in the topic, but you must be a registered user to edit pages and add content.

For more information, please contact:

  • Neil Thomson (n.thomson AT, Subgroup Convener, or
  • Ricardo Pereira (ricardo-at-tdwg-dot-org), System Administrator

Table of Contents

Introduction to Natural Collections Descriptions (NCD)

Natural Collections Descriptions is an emerging data standard for describing collections of natural history materials at the collection level - in other words, one NCD record describes one entire collection.

It is intended primarily as a lightweight resource description standard that is specific to natural history and lies between general resource discovery standards such as Dublin Core (DC) and rich collection description standards such as the Encoded Archival Description (EAD). However, it should be possible to extract a Dublin Core record from an NCD record for use with general resource discovery systems or, going in the other direction, to use an NCD record as the seed for a much richer collection description as and when time allows.

NCD is intended to cover any type of natural history collection, such as specimens, original artwork, archives, observations, library materials, datasets, photographs or mixed collections such as those that result from expeditions and voyages of discovery.

The charter and further information may be found at the NCD Website.

Latest Version and Related Files

NCD has reached version 0.9 and has been submitted (August 2008) to the TDWG approvals process through the Open Journal System. Once approved, it will be released as version 1.0

The latest normative files are in RDF and may be found in the TDWG resource directories:

The NCD files are Collection.rdf, CollectionType.rdf, Institution.rdf, InstitutionType.rdf and ContactDetails.rdf

Auxilliary files may be found as attachments at the foot of this page, including the second edition of the submission document, which incorporates corrections and additions requested by the Review Group.

Links to Discussion Topics


Work carried out from April 2nd to September 14th 2007


The 2005 and 2006 workshops were held at the Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC.

The 2007 Workshop was held at ETI in Amsterdam, 18th-19th June, 2007. The workshop reports for 2006, 2007 and other deliverables are available at the NCDWorkShops link.

No workshop took place in 2008.

NCD Public Review

The Public review phase of NCD is underway. All comments should be made at (use "Add Comment" on the right hand side of the page). If you wish to refer to a document, please FIRST go to NCDPublicReview and use the Attach function at the bottom of the page to upload the file. Then add your comment to the OJS URL above with a link to NCDPublicReview.

Background Reading and Related Activities

Auxilliary files

NCD-v090_TDWG.doc: NCD v0.90 OJS submission - Second Edition following peer review stage
Collection.rdf RDF for collection
CollectionType.rdf RDF for collection type
Institution.rdf RDF for institution
InstitutionType.rdf RDF for institution type
ContactDetails.rdf RDF for contact details
NCD-TDWG-2006.ppt 2006 presentation for TDWG

Show attachmentsHide attachments
Topic attachments
I Attachment Action Sizeup Date Who Comment
docdoc NCD-v090_05_nht.doc manage 1407.0 K 06 Aug 2008 - 10:00 NeilThomson NCD v0.9 Draft submission document
docdoc NCD-Guide-v1Draft.doc manage 152.0 K 26 Jan 2007 - 13:57 NeilThomson User Guide Draft 1
xlsxls NCD_terms_version_4_July26.xls manage 2542.5 K 26 Jul 2007 - 22:11 CarolButler Revised terminiology spreadsheet
docdoc NCD_Conference_Call_Minutes_May_17_2007.doc manage 28.5 K 18 May 2007 - 23:56 ConstanceRinaldo May 17, 2007 Conference call minutes
pptppt NCD-TDWG-2006.ppt manage 285.5 K 26 Jan 2007 - 14:04 NeilThomson 2006 ppt for TDWG
docdoc NCD-v090_TDWG.doc manage 475.5 K 12 Aug 2008 - 13:58 NeilThomson NCD v0.90 Submission file to Open Journal System
xlsxls NCD_terms_FINAL_Aug_3.xls manage 4997.0 K 03 Aug 2007 - 13:19 CarolButler FINAL version of NCD terms
docdoc NCD-v090_TDWG-SE.doc manage 544.0 K 26 Sep 2008 - 09:28 NeilThomson NCD v0.90 Second Edition following peer review stage
pptppt MCNNCD.ppt manage 866.0 K 07 Nov 2007 - 20:06 ConstanceRinaldo MCN powerpoint
docdoc NCD_WReport_to_TDWG.doc manage 89.5 K 26 Jan 2007 - 14:09 NeilThomson 2006 Workshop report
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