About SCNet

The Small Collections Network is an iDigBio initiative devoted to supporting small to moderately sized natural history collections. Such collections constitute a major source of information for understanding global biodiversity. Typically regional in scope and often with strong ecological, taxonomic, and geographic biases, they frequently hold specimens that are unduplicated in larger collections and can represent intense samplings of community composition that have the potential to significantly expand our knowledge of landscape-level biogeography. As a result, small collections constitute a singularly important resource for the study of regional and continental ecosystems both past and present. Digitizing and sustaining these collections will expand their accessibility, enhance the impact of the data they generate, and ensure incorporation of these data into ongoing biological and paleobiological research.
Recruiting, retaining, and sustaining small collections within digitization initiatives is a primary goal of the Small Collections Network (SCNet), a collaborative  venture supported by CollectionsWeb, iDigBio, the North American Network of Small Herbaria ( NANSH), SPNHC, and Central Michigan University (CMU). Conceived by members of the NANSH working group as part of an ongoing research project to provide empirical support for the importance of small herbaria, SCNet constitutes an informal, grassroots, working-group-style interdisciplinary network of small collections to facilitate curation and digitization as well as interaction among small collection directors, curators, collections managers, and contributors. Small collections across all disciplines often lack the necessary resources for full participation in the collections community--including the activities of SPNHC--and stand a greater-than-average risk of being left out of digitization initiatives and the intra- and interdisciplinary networking that these initiatives provide. SCNet is dedicated to addressing this situation by offering opportunities to address the specific curatorial and digitization-related challenges unique to small collections. 
For further information, please e-mail Gil Nelson (gnelson@bio.fsu.edu) or Anna Monfils (monfi1ak@cmich.edu).
SCNet is supported by a community listserv (IDIGBIOSCNET-L). To add yourself to the list, email listserv@lists.ufl.edu with the following command in the email: subscribe IDIGBIOSCNET-L first_name last_name, e.g., subscribe IDIGBIOSCNET-L Jane Doe.