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GGBN Membership

Membership in GGBN is open to institutions, organizations and other networks that have an interest in biodiversity biobanks. Institutions, government agencies, and other scientific organizations that own and manage collections of non-human genomic samples, along with other organizations involved in genomic biodiversity may apply to the Executive Committee to become a Member or may be nominated by a GGBN Member at any time. Membership in GGBN is by mutual agreement between the prospective Member and the Executive Committee. Prospective Members are expected to have interests in:

  • Genomic research and research infrastructure connected to non-human biodiversity;
  • Interacting with other Members and the GGBN Secretariat;
  • Contributing to the achievement of GGBN's goals.

Introduction and Letter of Invitation to Prospective Members from GGBN Program Manager.

Member Categories

GGBN has four Member categories: Observer Members, Associate Members, Core Members, and Consortia Members. In addition, organizations and other networks may join GGBN as a Partner.

Observer Members

Institutional biodiversity biobanks and organizations that have an interest in biodiversity biobanks and biodiversity informatics and/or:

  • Support the goals of GGBN;
  • Provide technical expertise to GGBN;
  • Participate in GGBN activities and Task Forces.

Observer status is limited to three years.

Associate Members

Institutional biodiversity biobanks that have initiated the process of becoming Core Members, and therefore:

  • Have made a commitment to long-term preservation of genomic collections and associated data, for the purpose of providing access for research;
  • Have an enterprise level data system that can provide data on a reliable basis;
  • Are represented in an institutional registry of biodiversity biobanks;
  • Intend to prepare and contribute data to the GGBN Data Portal in compliance with the standards established by the relevant GGBN Task Force.

Core Members

Institutional biodiversity biobanks which fulfill the requirements of Associate Membership and are actively contributing data to the GGBN Data Portal in compliance with the standards established by the relevant GGBN Task Force.

Consortia Members

A group of individual institutional biodiversity biobanks sharing a central server for collection data provision or collection database and fulfill the requirements of Associate or Core Membership. This category of participation is designed to allow consortia or collaborative organizations to provide data to GGBN. Consortia participation in GGBN will be negotiated with the GGBN Executive Committee on a case by case basis. Additionally, individual members of a consortium will be able to negotiate with the GGBN Executive Committee to gain complete access to GGBN’s direct benefits.

Member Contributions and Benefits

Contributions and direct benefits for Members are outlined in the table below. Contributions by Members may be made as in-kind or in-cash and are based on the institution’s country income level.

Monetary or In-kind Contributions for Direct Benefits
Core/Associate Observer Consortia
Contributions Yes No Negotiable
Technical Support Yes No Negotiable
Usage and Reporting Statistics Yes No Negotiable
Voting Participation in GGBN Governance Yes No Negotiable
Eligibility for GGBN Funding Opportunities Yes Yes Negotiable
Specialized Access to Biodiversity Biobanking Resources Yes No Negotiable
Reduced Registration Fee for GGBN Conferences Yes No Negotiable


Annual contributions are required of all Core and Associate Members and any member that would like access to direct benefits. Due to the variabilities of Consortia memberships, contributions and benefits are negotiated directly with the GGBN Executive Committee but will generally remain in keeping with the requirements for Core and Associate Members.

Annual contributions are either in-cash or in-kind and are based on the country income level. A country’s income level is updated annually based on the Economies by per capita GNI (Gross National Income) table, which is updated annually in the World Economic Situation and Prospects report.

A 50% discount is given to members retrospectively, thus members who provide new data to the GGBN data portal in the previous year get a reduced fee. For example, new samples are published to GGBN by member A in 2020, resulting in a 50% discount on member A’s annual contribution in 2021.

Contribution amounts are indicated in the grid below.

Country's Income Level Annual Contribution Amount (USD) Annual Contribution with Data Upload Discount (USD)
Low $100 $50
Lower Middle $475 $238
Upper Middle $800 $400
High $1250 $625

Members may also contribute through in-kind support in lieu of an in-cash payment. In-kind contributions are goods or services related and relevant to a GGBN-sponsored activity that GGBN would otherwise have paid for from its operating budget. In-kind contributions will be reviewed and approved by the Executive Committee annually and based on the needs of the GGBN’s annual operating budget.

In-kind contributions

  • A GGBN-solicited activity
  • Of a value comparable to the required membership contribution
  • Approved as in-kind support by the GGBN Executive Committee in advance of the activity

Additional information about Contributions and In-Kind Support can be found in the GGBN Contribution Guide.


Contributing Members will have access to the following direct benefits:

  • Technical support for genomic collection standardization and discoverability
  • Bi-annual usage and reporting statistics on collections made discoverable through GGBN
  • Active participation in GGBN governance and decision-making processes
  • Eligibility to funding opportunities through GGBN awards programs and for fundraising support
  • Specialized access to biodiversity biobanking resources, such as webinars, forums, and workshops, along with access to other network members.

Based on direct benefits received, Contributing GGBN Members will receive the following indirect benefits:

  • Raised Institutional Member Profile. Increased institutional credibility by participating in a network of leading institutions that share focuses on transparency and compliance with legal measures and sets the global standard for biodiversity biobanking.
  • Greater Visibility and Impact. Increased sample discoverability, driving added value, use and relevance of the member’s genetic collection.
  • Shared Best Practices. Facilitated management and stewardship of genetic and other molecular samples and their derivatives, at the institutional level.
  • Knowledge Exchange. Training and access to the document library and other resources. Networking with potential collaborators through conferences, workshops, and working groups.
  • Strategic Relationships. Collections growth by facilitated networking with the research community. Access to expertise in biobanking, collections, and data discoverability through GGBN’s partners, such as Consortium of European Taxonomic Facilities (CETAF), Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF), European, Middle Eastern and African Society for Biopreservation and Biobanking (ESBB), International Nucleotide Sequence Database Collaboration (INSDC), and International Society for Biological and Environmental Biorepositories (ISBER).

Application Process

Inquiries about GGBN membership and the application process should be directed to the GGBN Secretariat at

To apply, applicants will be required to submit the GGBN Institution Information form for review and approval by the GGBN Executive Committee.

Following approval by the GGBN Executive Committee, the applicant will be required to have their institution sign Appendix I of the GGBN MOU. As appropriate, Members will be provided with a pro-rated invoice and/or in-kind support proposal form to complete the membership process.

Membership Documents