In Italy, differently from other countries, a national museum of natural history is not present. This absence is due, among other reasons, to its historical political fragmentation up to 1870, which led to the establishment of medium-sized museums, mostly managed by local administrations or universities. Moreover, a change of paradigm in biological research, at the beginning of the 20th century, contributed to privilege experimental studies in universities and facilitated the dismissal of descriptive and exploratory biology, which formed the basis of the taxonomic research carried out by natural history museums. Consequently, only a few museums have a provision of curatorial staff, space and material resources adequate to maintain their original mission of discovering the natural world, by conducting a regular research activity accompanied by field campaigns. The creation of a national research centre for the study of biodiversity, facilitating interconnections among the existing natural history museums could be a solution and is here supported, together with a centralised biorepository to host collections and vouchers, to the benefit of current and future taxonomic research and environmental conservation. Such an institution should find place and realisation within the recently proposed National Biodiversity Future Center (NBFC) planned within the National Plan of Recovery and Resilience (PNRR). Pending upon the creation of this new national centre, a network among the existing museums should coordinate their activities.

Andreone, F., Boero, F., Bologna, M.A., Carpaneto, G.M., Castiglia, R., Gippoliti, S., et al. (2022). Reconnecting research and natural history museums in Italy and the need of a national collection biorepository. ZOOKEYS, 1004, 56-68 [10.3897/zookeys.1104.79823].

Reconnecting research and natural history museums in Italy and the need of a national collection biorepository

Marco A. Bologna;Giuseppe M. Carpaneto;
2022-01-01

Abstract

In Italy, differently from other countries, a national museum of natural history is not present. This absence is due, among other reasons, to its historical political fragmentation up to 1870, which led to the establishment of medium-sized museums, mostly managed by local administrations or universities. Moreover, a change of paradigm in biological research, at the beginning of the 20th century, contributed to privilege experimental studies in universities and facilitated the dismissal of descriptive and exploratory biology, which formed the basis of the taxonomic research carried out by natural history museums. Consequently, only a few museums have a provision of curatorial staff, space and material resources adequate to maintain their original mission of discovering the natural world, by conducting a regular research activity accompanied by field campaigns. The creation of a national research centre for the study of biodiversity, facilitating interconnections among the existing natural history museums could be a solution and is here supported, together with a centralised biorepository to host collections and vouchers, to the benefit of current and future taxonomic research and environmental conservation. Such an institution should find place and realisation within the recently proposed National Biodiversity Future Center (NBFC) planned within the National Plan of Recovery and Resilience (PNRR). Pending upon the creation of this new national centre, a network among the existing museums should coordinate their activities.
2022
Andreone, F., Boero, F., Bologna, M.A., Carpaneto, G.M., Castiglia, R., Gippoliti, S., et al. (2022). Reconnecting research and natural history museums in Italy and the need of a national collection biorepository. ZOOKEYS, 1004, 56-68 [10.3897/zookeys.1104.79823].
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11590/409541
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