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Record: oai:ARNO:533174

AuthorsL.G. Saw, E. Soepadmo
TitleThe Flora Malesiana Project and its relevance to Malaysia
JournalFlora Malesiana Bulletin
AbstractIn a developing country like Malaysia, it is becoming difficult to attract funds to do basic taxonomic work. Taxonomic research must be made relevant to national needs. Among the increasing needs for indigenous plants and their environment in Malaysia are their conservation and determining the sustainable use of these resources. Both of these needs require a good and correct understanding of what is there, where they are found, how they interact in their natural environment and how they response to human perturbations. Basic to such understanding is good taxonomy and identification. The work of documenting the flora of Malaysia is still progressing very slowly. We are not advocating that the Flora Malesiana project solves the needs of Malaysia but if the project is to create a wider interest and to make a greater impact in countries of the Malesian region, the speed of taxonomic revision must increase. In this context, analysis of the progress, needs and prospects of the Flora Malesiana project made by Roos (1997) still applies today. The Flora Malesiana project has helped local floristic projects such as the Tree Flora of Sabah and Sarawak project in Malaysia. In recent years, the use of the Internet has added new dimensions of information dissemination to botanists in the Malesian region, e.g., the international plant names index, Kew records of taxonomic literature and type specimen database (provided by the Nationaal Herbarium Nederland, Leiden; Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew; and other herbaria in the world). Some of these e-facilities are not directly linked with the Flora Malesiana project, but have been very helpful for those working outside Europe and the USA. Such efforts should increase. In addition, the question of format of the publication needs some re-examination, participation from the Malesian region through common funding mechanism should be made available and there is a need for a wider distribution of the Flora Malesiana publications.
Document typearticle
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