Wayland, Mass., December 14, 2006 – The Open Geospatial Consortium, Inc. (OGC) and the international body for Biodiversity Information Standards (TDWG) signed a memorandum of understanding to work together on standards to promote dissemination of information about biological organisms and the diversity of life on earth.

Mark Reichardt, President of the OGC explained, “The OGC is pleased to have the opportunity to work with the TDWG to develop profiles and schemas of OGC standards based on the TDWG's international framework for representation of biological organisms. It is through organizations such as the TDWG that scientific information communities gain maximum benefit from the industry standards developed in the OGC.”

The TDWG and the OGC will collaborate in the development of profiles and schemas of OGC standards such as the Geography Markup Language (GML) and TDWG standards for representation of location of biological specimens, organisms and their distributions, communities, movements, etc. Joint activities may involve testbeds and interoperability experiments on the spatial representation of biodiversity. The two groups will also collaborate on outreach.

The OGC is an international industry consortium of more than 335 companies, government agencies, research organizations, and universities participating in a consensus process to develop publicly available interface specifications. OpenGIS® Specifications support interoperable solutions that “geo-enable” the Web, wireless and location-based services, and mainstream IT. The specifications empower technology developers to make complex spatial information and services accessible and useful with all kinds of applications. Visit the OGC website at http://www.opengeospatial.org.

Biodiversity Information Standards (TDWG: http://www.tdwg.org) is a not for profit scientific and educational association, affiliated with the International Union of Biological Sciences. TDWG formed to establish international collaboration among biological databases. TDWG now develops standards that promote the wider and more effective dissemination of information about the world's heritage of biological organisms for the benefit of the world at large.