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Biodiversity Digital Museum: Dr. Ching-I Peng's Legacy of Biodiversity Research-Research on Taiwanese and Chinese Begonia Species

Basic information
Project identifier AS-ASCDC-109-303
Conducted by Biodiversity Research Center
Director
Overview

The Research Museum of Biodiversity Research Center, Academia Sinica (BRCAS) houses a wealth of biological specimens collected by generations of biodiversity researchers of the institute. These precious biological collections not only are important research materials, but also a lifetime dedication to researchers’ academic careers. Studying researchers’ collecting history provides a unique opportunity to understand the development of their academic career, providing examples and role models for young-generation scientists. Dr. Ching-I Peng, retired Research Fellow and Director of BRCAS Research Museum, passed away in May, 2018. In recent decades, Dr. Peng was devoted fully to the studies of Begonia, publishing 80 scientific publications in various subjects about Begonia and describing around 100 new Begonia species. Through international collaboration and extensive fieldwork across China and SE Asia, Dr. Peng built BRCAS’s experimental greenhouse as one of the largest living collections of Begonia, serving not only as a hub for Begonia research but also the essential refuge of Begonia germplasm preservation. Dr. Peng’s scientific works on Begonia gave great impetus to Begonia research, facilitating the rapid growth of this mega genus from around 900 species in 1997 to 1,947 today. To continue and exalt Dr. Peng’s botanical legacy, we propose to portray Dr. Peng’s research of Taiwanese and Chinese Begonia species through the Open Museum designed by ASCDC. Digitized images of herbarium specimens, photographs taken during field work, relevant literature, and other related materials such as field notes will be reviewed and organized into an exhibition to illustrate Dr. Peng’s enduring contribution.

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