IRRO Survey on Resources Covering Environmental Release of Organisms

E. Ross eross at
Wed Dec 22 21:22:22 EST 1993

IRRO Secretariat
c/o MSDN                 MSDN at 
307 Huntingdon Road      
Cambridge CB3 0JX        Tel:+44-223-276622    
UK                       Fax:+44-223-277605        

                            ** IRRO ** 
        Information Resource for the Release of Organisms 
                       into the Environment

    IRRO Survey on Existing Databases and Information Resources
     Relevant to the Release of Organisms into the Environment

IRRO is an information network, run on a non-profit basis, which
aims to provide access to all types of information relevant to the
release of animals, plants and microorganisms into the
environment. IRRO is an acronym for the Information Resource for
the Release of Organisms to the Environment. The decision to
establish the IRRO was taken in 1991, under initial impetus from
the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), and the
intervening period has been used to establish priorities and to
search for funds.

Information of interest for IRRO might include details of, for
example, releases of non-indigenous, novel or genetically modified
organisms. It might cover ecological data relevant to receiving
environments. It could include information on the regulatory
oversight of releases of non-indigenous organisms or genetically
modified organisms. It could include information on the impacts of
biodiversity. There are many other possibilities.

IRRO is intended to be a network which will facilitate access to
existing relevant databases and other information sources located
throughout the world. It is envisaged that there will be many
types of users of the IRRO with many different interests. They
could include NGOs (non-governmental organisations), policy
makers, scientists interested in academic issues or those
interested in accessing information relevant to
regulatory/oversight purposes.

To initiate the establishment of a global information resource on
the  introduction of novel and genetically modified organisms into
the  environment UNEP has commissioned this survey which aims to
identify and describe databases and other information resources on
the environmental release of organisms which would be suitable for
access via the IRRO Network. This survey has been prepared by the
IRRO, in consultation with Steering Group Members and UNEP.

As a user and/or provider of relevant data resources your
cooperation in answering the questions overleaf is greatly
appreciated.  If you know of another person(s) who could best
complete the form, please pass on to them.

Please return the form to the IRRO Secretariat (address below) by
31st December 1993.  This is not a strict deadline, but is
requested to help ensure as complete coverage as possible of
available data resources in the report to UNEP and help identify
the gaps in the information.

             The IRRO Survey on Information Resources 
           Covering Environmental Releases of Organisms

Please use a separate sheet for information on each
database/information source. The data resource could be in
electronic form (eg. computer disk, online database, electronic
bulletin board, list server, CD-ROM) or in printed form (eg.
journal, newsletter).

1. Please give your name:_________________________________________

   Address: ______________________________________________________


   Tel:_______________  Fax:_______________  E-mail_______________

2. If you are a user or "would-be" user of information resources
   on environmental releases please describe:

i) what specific information you would like to have available
   through the IRRO (eg. data not currently available or difficult
   to access)? 





ii) any special problems you foresee (technical, political,
    financial etc.) in accessing IRRO data resources?    





    Please draw a ring around the appropriate answer YES or NO

3. Are you aware of a suitable database or information source 
   which could be of interest to those using the IRRO?    YES / NO

   If YES, please go to question 4 and complete the rest of the

   If NO, please return this form to the IRRO Secretariat (address
   below) with your answers to questions 1, 2 and 3.

4. Does this "database/information source" give information on:

i)   animals                                              YES / NO
ii)  plants                                               YES / NO
iii) microorganisms                                       YES / NO
iv)  viruses                                              YES / NO
v)   other                                                YES / NO
    (please specify) _____________________________________________

5. Does this "database/information source" contain information on
   any of the following:

i)  releases of non-indigenous organisms                  YES / NO
ii) releases of genetically modified organisms(GMOs)      YES / NO
iii)ecological information                                YES / NO
iv) regulatory information                                YES / NO
v)  health information                                    YES / NO
vi) taxonomic information/identification                  YES / NO
vii)other                                                 YES / NO
(please give additional information)


6. Please give the name, location and data provider of this
   "database/information source", as well as a contact name,
   address, telephone, fax and electronic mail id (if known):

i)  name of resource:  __________________________________________

ii) location of resource: _______________________________________

iii)data provider/publisher: ____________________________________

iv) contact name: ________________________________________________

v)  address:______________________________________________________


Tel:________________  Fax:________________  E-mail________________

7. Please give a short free text description of the coverage and
   scope of the "database/information resource." [If publications,
   other literature or sample records are available describing the
   resource please send with the completed form. If a thesaurus is
   available please describe.]





8. Please list keyword(s) you would use to describe the "database/
   information resource"?  



9. If known, what is the size of the "database/information
   resource" eg. number of records, bytes of data?

Size of resource _________________________________________________

10. If known, how often is the "database/information resource"
    i)   daily                                            YES / NO
    ii)  weekly                                           YES / NO
    iii) monthly                                          YES / NO
    iv)  annually                                         YES / NO
    v)   other                                            YES / NO

    (please specify)______________________________________________

11. Through what media is the "database/information source"

    i)   online database                                  YES / NO
    ii)  online bulletin board, conference or list server YES / NO
    iii) computer disk                                    YES / NO
    iv)  CD-ROM                                           YES / NO
    v)   printed                                          YES / NO
    iv)  other                                            YES / NO
       (please specify)___________________________________________

12. If the "database/information resource" is accessible online
    please indicate whether access is possible using:

    i)   commercial public data networks (X.25,IPSS,PSS)  YES / NO
    ii)  Internet                                         YES / NO
    iii) Academic networks                                YES / NO
    (please specify which)________________________________________
    iv)  FIDONet                                          YES / NO
    v)  other                                             YES / NO
    (please specify)______________________________________________

13. If the resource is available as a database please give
    information on the type of Database Management System (DBMS):

         (please ring)   RELATIONAL / EXPERT SYSTEM (A.I.)

    (please specify)______________________________________________

[Note: A free text DBMS can simply be a word processed or ascii file]

    ii)  name of DBMS (if known): ________________________________


    iii) interface used to search data (eg. graphical [such as
         WINDOWS], menu, command language, etc):


14. If the "database/information resource" is available on
    computer disk please give information on:

i)  computer system and environment required (eg. Macintosh, IBM
    compatible/MS-DOS, Sun SPARC/Unix): __________________________



ii) software required: ___________________________________________

iii)any other requirements: ______________________________________

15. Is there a charge for accessing this "database/
    information source"?                                  YES / NO

    If yes, please give details: _________________________________


16. Are any of the data of restricted availability (eg.
    commercially sensitive data)?                  YES / NO/ SOME 

17. Do you have any additional suggestions concerning the IRRO?  
    If so, please give details: __________________________________




18. Would you like to receive additional information about the
    IRRO?                                                 YES / NO

19. Would you like to receive a copy of the report on the IRRO
    survey findings?:                                     YES / NO

Thank you for taking the time to complete this form.  

Please return to the IRRO Secretariat c/o MSDN, 307 Huntingdon
Road, Cambridge CB3 0JX, UK. Tel:+44 223 276622 Fax:+44 223 277605 
Email: msdn at  Forms can be returned by electronic
mail as well as by post.

It would be most helpful if you would return the completed form by
December 31st although completed forms received after this date
will still be very useful and are welcomed.  

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