Abc Taxa is a series of peer-reviewed manuals dedicated to capacity building in zoological and botanical taxonomy, in collection management and in good practices in taxonomic and curatorial research. It facilitates the liberation of taxonomic and curatorial skills, competences and know-how needed to carry out basic to advanced taxonomic research on a particular living taxon.


Abc Taxa also intends to act as speaker's corner for those experts who have the skills to communicate on good practices in taxonomic research. 


Zoological taxonomy
Botanical taxonomy Collection management Good practices




Abc Taxa was initiated by the Belgian National Focal Point to the Global Taxonomy Initiative,but today, the series is the joint product of the three main Belgian natural history institutions, being the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences (Brussels), the Royal Museum for Central Africa (Tervuren) and the National Botanic Garden of Belgium (Meise). These institutions cooperate on an open and constructive basis with their specific several national and international partners.

Funding for the production of these manuals is provided by the Belgian Development Cooperation.


Abc Taxa aims to accelerate taxonomic capacity building by clearing existing taxonomic know-how. Therefore each volume strives to provide a detailed state of the art needed to embark on the taxonomy of a particular living taxon. As such, each manuscript should at least include the following, preferably didactically illustrated, sections:


  • an introduction to the general biology of the taxon;
  • a description of the collecting methodologies commonly used for the taxon;
  • a description of the curatorial methodologies commonly used for the taxon;
  • a description of the characters employed in the taxonomy of the group;
  • an outline of the current classification of the taxon;
  • a guide to the identification of the members of the taxon in the region under study;
  • a short list of key-references.


Taxa can be considered at any hierarchical level above the species. Both regional accounts and global treatises are deemed suitable for publication.

Further, as capacity building in taxonomic research does not stop with taxonomy sensu stricto, but also dwells on good practices, manuscripts dealing with related, more applied topics, relevant to taxonomic research will also be considered (e.g. nature photography, databasing, ...).

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