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HREC approval number: H-2022-056
Principal Investigator: Dr Colette Blyth

To download or view the Participant Information Sheet, please click here

What is the project about, and who is undertaking the research?

You’ve been identified as a manager of crop or biodiversity genetic resource collections in Australia.
We are the Australasian Hub of DivSeek International – a not-for-profit that promotes knowledge and benefit-sharing of plant genetic resources. Our team is investigating the coverage of genetic resources housed across Australia, from tissue samples all the way to extracted DNA and genomic data.
We would appreciate a few minutes of your time to answer some general questions about your collection. 
The information you provide will help us understand where and how plant genetic resources are housed in Australia. If you are willing, your collection could become part of a national database describing available crop and biodiversity genetic resources and contribute significant benefit to the scientific community.
This project is a collaboration between DivSeek
International Regional Hub for Australasia 
and Bioplatforms Australia. The concept will build on the Atlas of Living Australia’s ‘Collectory’. It is coordinated by researchers at the University of Adelaide.
We also request that you share this survey with anyone who may wish to participate.

Survey Preamble

Why am I being invited to participate, and how long will it take?

You are being invited as you have been identified as a key stakeholder in the area of crop and biodiversity genetic resource collections within Australia. The target audience for this online survey includes managers, users, directors, and chief investigators of these genetic resource collections across Australia.

We estimate that the survey will take 20 minutes.

What are the potential benefits of the research project?

The data collected in this survey forms the scoping phase into the establishment of a database of genetic resources for the scientific community. This could potentially have direct benefits to the participants.

Are there any associated risks, and can I withdraw my participation?

Participation in this project is completely voluntary. Your decision to / not to participate will in no way impact your relationship with the University of Adelaide, Bioplatforms, or DivSeek International. If you agree to participate, you can withdraw from the study at any time up until you submit the survey.

What happens with my information?

Confidentiality and privacy: Participants can agree to future involvement in the proposed genetic resource database or can request a specific follow-up before making a decision (over the phone or via email). If you do not agree to participate, your identity and institution will be de-identified to the best of our ability in any reporting of results (i.e., no contact details, names, or institution names will be shared). However, it may be possible that through the reporting of our results there is some implication that your institution has participated (e.g., if there is only one herbarium in a region and we report a breakdown of results from that region). Therefore, though all efforts will be made to ensure participants identities are protected,  due to the small and discreet sample size complete anonymity cannot be guaranteed.

Data will be collated and stored according to the Australian Code for the Responsible Conduct of Research (2018).

Storage: The primary place of data storage will be electronically on the secure University of Adelaide server. Permission controls will ensure that only the research team will have access to the data. The research team members are obligated to comply with the University of Adelaide data storage requirements. All data will be stored for a minimum of five years.

Publishing and sharing: Aggregated research results will be published in a report to DivSeek International and Bioplatforms and in peer-reviewed academic journals. The participants will not be individually identifiable in any publication or reporting. De-identified data will be made available to other researchers for future research. Participants can request a copy of the aggregate findings from the research team.

By completing and submitting this exercise, you are giving consent to be involved in this project. Your de-identified responses may be used for unspecified future research purposes.

Your information will only be used as described, and it will only be disclosed according to the consent provided, except as required by law.
Who do I contact if I have questions about the project?

If you have any questions about this project at any stage, please feel free to contact us:

Primary contact: Dr Colette Blyth
E: P: 0456897244

Secondary contact: Professor Andy Lowe
E: P: 0434607705

Alternate contact person: Dr Arif Malik
E: P: 0415262616

What if I have a complaint or concerns?

The study has been approved by the Human Research Ethics Committee at the University of Adelaide (approval number H-2022-056). This research project will be conducted according to the NHMRC National Statement on Ethical Conduct in Human Research 2007 (Updated 2018). If you have questions or problems associated with the practical aspects of your participation in the project, or wish to raise a concern or complaint about the project, then you should consult the Principal Investigator. If you wish to speak with an independent person regarding concerns or a complaint, the University’s policy on research involving human participants, or your rights as a participant, please contact the Human Research Ethics Committee’s Secretariat on:

Phone: +61 8 8313 6028  Email:     
Post: Level 3, Rundle Mall Plaza, 50 Rundle Mall, ADELAIDE SA 5000

Any complaint or concern will be treated in confidence and fully investigated. You will be informed of the outcome.

If I want to participate, what do I do?

If you wish to participate, please complete this online survey. The submission of completed responses will be taken as an indication you have read and understood the above information, and consent to participate

Yours sincerely,

Dr Colette Blyth – Project coordinator

Professor Andy Lowe – Co-lead

DivSeek International Regional Hub for Australasia

We are continuously seeking to grow our network, and we welcome you to join us. If you would like to join or have any questions, please contact hub project coordinator, Dr Colette Blyth:

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