São Paulo Research Foundation, Fapesp, and Ohio State University will inaugurate on February 27 at The Ohio Union Gallery, the exhibition Brazilian Nature – Mystery and Destiny, which addresses the knowledge about the Brazilian biodiversity. Promoted in partnership with Ohio State Innovation Group, the exhibition will be open to the public until March 30.
The opening ceremony will be attended by Dr. Daniel Janies, Associate Professor of the College of Medicine, Dr. Caroline Whitacre, Vice President for Research and Paulo Sotero, Director of Brazil Institute at Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, Washington DC.
To celebrate the opening of this exhibit, the Ohio State Innovation Group for Global Infectious Disease Research is holding a seminar on "Brazilian Nature and Our Scientific Partnerships" on Monday, February 27 from 8 a.m. - 4 p.m. in the West Ballroom of the Ohio Union. The seminar, which will touch on biomedicine, biodiversity, bioenergy and educational partnerships, will focus on research of mutual interest to the United States and Brazil.
The exhibition has as its main reference the Flora brasiliensis, the work of the German botanist Carl Philipp von Martius (1794-1868), that even 171 years after his first published volume remains the most comprehensive survey of the flora.
Carlos Henrique de Brito Cruz, scientific director of FAPESP, says: "It is important to show that Brazil is aware of the biodiversity in a sophisticated way, which is to treat it as an object of research programs well organized and well prepared that produce results with global impact."
With reproductions of images, illustrations and explanatory texts, the 37 panels that make up the exhibition were designed based on data from three projects supported by FAPESP: Flora brasiliensis Online and Revisited, Phanerogamous Flora of the State of São Paulo and the Biota-FAPESP Program.
Daniel Janies, Associate Professor in the Department of Biomedical Informatics at OSU, says: "The increasing strength of the United States' relationship with Brazil can be seen through the recent reciprocal Presidential visits as well as the joint work by the NSF and FAPESP scientists. The Ohio State University's relationship with Brazil will continue to grow. For example, we have many joint research projects, we will host a meeting with scientists and educators from Brazil and will travel for joint research in Brazil in mid 2012. We also plan to open an office in São Paulo in 2014."
Representatives of the three projects assisted the compilation of the content of the show, which was successfully presented at the Museum of the Botanical Garden in Berlin in 2008, the Haus der Wissenschaft at Leipzig University, in Bremen in 2009, the Woodrow Wilson Center (Washington) in 2011 and currently at the Museum of the University of Heidelberg, Germany, until June 29.
Exhibition in three parts
The design of the Flora brasiliensis Online and Revisited, which corresponds to the first part of the exhibition, represents a continuity to the work of Martius, who had his last volume published after the author's death in 1906.
In 2006, the project has made available on the Internet the full version of the work of Martius, with 10,207 pages with text descriptions of nearly 23,000 species and nearly 4,000 illustrations. The Flora brasiliensis Online and Revisited includes the update of the nomenclature used in the original work of Martius and the inclusion of species described after its publication, with new information and recent pictures.
The work was funded by a partnership between FAPESP, the Vitae Foundation and Natura Cosmetics and executed by the Reference Center on Environmental Information (Cria), located at the State University of Campinas (Unicamp) and the Missouri Botanical Garden, United States. The Flora brasiliensis Online is available in http://florabrasiliensis.cria.org.br.
The second part of the exhibition refers to the project Phanerogamous Flora of the State São Paulo, started in 1993 with the participation of over 200 researchers. The project brings together researchers from University of São Paulo (USP), Unicamp, São Paulo State University (Unesp), three research institutes - Botanical, Forestry and Agronomy – and the Department of Parks and Green Areas of the Municipality of São Paulo. Embrapa researchers in other Brazilian states and other countries also contribute.
The third element of the exposure exceeds the boundaries of botany and addresses biodiversity more generally, corresponding to the BIOTA-FAPESP Program, whose results have been applied as an instrument of environmental preservation in the State of São Paulo.
The digitized panels of Brazilian Nature exhibition can be seen, with subtitles in Portuguese, English and German at www.fapesp.br/publications/braziliannature.
The São Paulo Research Foundation (FAPESP) is one of the main agencies for promoting scientific research in Brazil. Its mission is to foster scientific research in all fields of knowledge by awarding scholarships, fellowships and grants to researchers linked with higher education and research institutions in the State of São Paulo, Brazil.
In nearly 50 years, FAPESP has granted 105,000 scholarships and fellowships from undergraduate to postdoctoral studies and provided financial aid to 92,000 individual and thematic research projects (with greater duration and more ambitious goals), and to improve research infrastructure.
The Foundation also seeks to foster research in areas considered strategic for the country, and at the same time, crucial for the advance of science at home and abroad. FAPESP supports projects in these areas through programs, focused on ambitious research into current topics in the international academic research area, such as global climate change, biodiversity and renewable energy.
On addition to the projects financed exclusively by FAPESP, the Foundation maintains cooperation agreements with national and international research funding bodies, with foreign institutions of higher education and research, and with private companies.
FAPESP resources are guaranteed by the State Constitution, which provides to it one percent of the State's tax revenue. The Foundation has complete administrative and financial autonomy.
In 2011, FAPESP invested US$ 546 million toward the advancement of science, an increase of 20% over that invested in 2010. In the last decade, the resources allocated by FAPESP have grown by 90%.
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