Vanderlei Perez Canhos
President and Director, Reference Center on Environmental Information (CRIA)
Vanderlei Perez Canhos is the founding President Director of the Brazilian Reference Center on Environmental Information (CRIA), a non-governmental organization devoted to making biodiversity data freely and openly available via the Internet. With a Ph. D. degree in microbiology from Oregon State University – OSU (1980), his early scientific career at the State University of Campinas (UNICAMP) focus was on microbial systematics and industrial fermentations. For the last 20 years, his work focused on the development of strategies and policies for the consolidation of biological collections, biodiversity databases and information systems in Brazil and Latin America. He contributed to the design and implementation of the Inter-American Biodiversity Information Network (IABIN), the Virtual Institute of Biodiversity of the Biota-Fapesp Program, and the Brazilian Network of Biological Resource Centers. As a consultant to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), he was involved in the discussions and development of the Best Practices Guidelines for the Operation and Management of Biological Resources Centers. He acted as the team leader of the speciesLink network and the ecological niche modeling framework openModeller. Current focus includes the development of strategies to secure permanence and sustainability of the data infrastructure that currently provides more than 8 million records from samples in biological collections (Brazilian botanical and zoological specimens and microbial strains) and associated tools and web services, essential components for the development of the Brazilian Virtual Herbarium. He is a currently a member of the Board of Directors of Species2000 /Catalogue of Life, and a former member of the Board of Directors of ETI Bioinformatics (University of Amsterdam) and the Advisory Board of Global Research Data Infrastructures (GRDI 2020).