Genomics of Genebanks

Group goal

Catalyze the advanced conservation, management and traceability of plant genetic  resources.


We currently have no definitive means to determine unequivocally  the provenance of plant genetic resources. Standardized identity tracing, especially during rounds of regeneration, will improve the efficiency of gene bank curation and will improve stakeholder access to diversity. Furthermore, improved methods for standardized interoperability between gene banks will build user trust and contribute to long-term data sharing.


Increasing recognition and awareness of the concept that a gene bank accession may formally represent a genetic population is central to the development of appropriate systems for the identification and tracing of plant genetic resources.


We aim to establish and encourage the widespread adoption of standards for sampling, unique identifiers, controlled vocabularies and ontologies that are appropriate and contribute to the identity and traceability of plant genetic resources beyond gene bank accessions, encompassing the research and breeding communities as well the wider economic, social and environmental context.

This may require a more detailed management of the current DOI system applied in formal treaties such as the ITPGRFA.

Who Benefits

The global genetic resource management, research, breeding and farming communities, downstream processers, and users of plant products.


A globally cohesive plant genetic resources community that can exchange standardized information and resources.

Group Leaders

Chris Richards (USDA) and Robert Davey (Earlham Institute).