TDWG 2017 Annual Conference

1-6 October 2017, Ottawa, Canada


Announcing TDWG 2017

We are excited to announce that Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada and the Canadian Museum of Nature will host the 2017 Biodiversity Information Standards (TDWG) conference in Ottawa, Canada, Oct. 1 - Oct. 6. It is critical that you contact us as soon as possible if you would like to host an event (e.g. training, a hackathon, or a workshop) either before or after the TDWG meeting, as accommodation space will be limited. Several options for venues are available. Below, please find a call for workshop and symposium proposals. Calls for presentations, computer demonstrations, posters, and meetings of TDWG Interest/Task Groups will be announced in April. Use #tdwg17 to stay informed.

About the meeting
Standards for the description and exchange of biodiversity information help promote research, support decision-making for conservation and planning, and provide a means of communicating observations across taxa, sub-disciplines, and political boundaries. The annual TDWG conference serves two purposes:

Our theme this year is Data Integration in a Big Data Universe: Associating Occurrences with Genes, Phenotypes, and Environments.

Associating genotypes with phenotypes has been the subject of previous TDWG symposia, and remains one of the great ongoing challenges of biodiversity science. It is complicated by our increased (but still nascent) understanding of the role played by microbiomes in phenotype expression. (As Bob Robbins pointed out in his 2012 keynote, some microbial genes, due to inter-species horizontal gene transfer, are better understood as attributes of a particular ecosystem than of a particular species.) Meanwhile, "habitat" remains one of the most over-burdened of Darwin Core terms, conflating climate, geology, taxonomic association, and other environmental variables. Our theme is intended to provoke discussion around questions such as: Can current systems, methods, and schemas be used to capture and understand patterns of association amongst occurrences, genes, phenotypes, and environments? If so, how? If not, what gaps need to be filled?

Call for Workshops and Proposals

We invite you to submit proposals for workshops and symposia, which can be organized around already established themes, or which can be used to explore emerging topics of interest.  At TDWG, a symposium is typically a collection of talks, sometimes with a panel or open discussion; a workshop may have talks, but typically encourages more active engagement through training activities, or through facilitating consensus around a key issue. Symposia and workshops addressing the conference theme are encouraged, but other topics relating to biodiversity information management, integration, analysis, and standards are also welcomed. Possible topics include:

For full consideration, please submit your proposal via email to by 10 March 2017 (extended from 1 March). Proposals should be fewer than 400 words, and should include the following:
  1. Names, email addresses, and affiliations of all organizers.
  2. Whether the proposal is for a workshop or a symposium.
  3. Whether the organizer(s) will accept unsolicited abstract submissions (vs. inviting all speakers themselves).
  4. Number of 90 minute sessions requested.
Please note: As mentioned above, this is a call for workshop and symposium proposals only. The general call for contributed papers and posters will be announced in April 2017, after the symposia and workshops have been selected and announced. Please address questions to

Welcome to Ottawa!

One of the reasons that we are very excited to host TDWG 2017 in Ottawa, is that in 2017 Canada is celebrating its 150th birthday! Many events and celebrations are planned throughout the year. Learn more about the celebrations at Canada 150 and Ottawa 2017.

As a result of this year-long celebration, Ottawa is going to be very busy all year and thus hotels and other accommodations are going to be fully booked well in advance. Most Canadian hotels have very flexible cancellation rates, and reservations can typically by cancelled with no charges or fees up to days before the booking (varies by hotel). This means that you should BOOK YOUR ACCOMMODATION NOW! (see below for options). Booking early also helps us plan better to make sure accommodation and conference facilities are appropriately sized.

With the conference being held at the Delta Hotel, we are better able to keep the associated conference costs low. This entails a commitment to room reservations at the Delta. If at all possible, and for your greatest convenience, please book your TDWG 2017 accommodation at the Delta to ensure that our commitment is fulfilled. If you haven't booked already, book now!



As we mentioned above, if at all possible, please book your accommodation at the Delta to ensure we fulfill our room commitment to qualify for the heavily discounted conference venue space.

All 3 hotels listed have a TDWG block of rooms reserved from Friday Sept 29 - Friday October 6, 2017. You may be able to extend your stay at the same rate.

Stay at the same hotel as the conference!

The Delta has our group’s registration site up and running. Book now with the Delta. Using the link, you can directly access the rates negotiated for the conference.

Rooms: Several room types available; 2 queen beds standard.

Rates: $229+ CAD + tax

Booking deadline: August 29, 2017

Occupancy: additional $20 CAD per person for triple and quadruple occupancy (max. 4 ppl/room)

Cancellation Policy: free if cancelled at least 24 hours before reservation

Website: Delta Hotels Ottawa City Centre

Phone Number: +1 613-237-3600

Address: 101 Lyon Street North

Distance to Conference Venue: 0 km

Other options

Byward Blue Inn: reference “TDWG2017” to access TDWG reserved rooms and rates

Rooms: 17 single Queen rooms (1 Queen bed); 3 twin (2 single beds) rooms

Rates: $163 CAD + tax

Booking deadline August 29,2017

Cancellation Policy: free if cancelled at least 24 hours before reservation

Website: Byward Blue Inn

Phone Number: +1 613-241-2695 or Toll Free +1-800-620-8810 

Address: 157 Clarence Street

Distance to Conference Venue: 2.1 km

Capital Hill Suites: by phone or email reference "TDWG2017". For online reservations: Group code: 763521 and Pin#: TDWG17

Rooms: 2 Queen Beds

Rates: $149 CAD + tax

Booking Deadline: August 15, 2017

Cancellation Policy: free if cancelled at least 24 hours before reservation

Website: Capital Hill Hotel & Suites

Phone Number: +1 613-235-1413 or Toll Free +1 800-463-7705

Address: 88 Albert Street

Distance to Conference Venue: 900 m.


**You may have to contact these hotels to be sure you access the TDWG rate. Check for sales or deals on your favorite online travel tool (please do not do this for Delta Hotel bookings), these venues may become available at lower rates.**