What's New?

The Global Pollen Project was launched as a preview in Feburary 2015.

Release 2.0.1 (February 2023)

This release includes bug fixes and enhancements to the digitisation tools. It does not include any new functionality.

Release 2.0 (February 2022)

Release 2.0 included mainly under-the-hood changes that enable new functionality to be built in future releases and modernise the platform. It also updated connections to third-party services to the latest APIs.

A preview of our own API was included in this release, with documentation accessible at

Release 1.5 (October 2017)

The Global Pollen Project has been revised from the ground-up, to include more robust data models, a significantly more performant web interface, and new features. New features include:

Feature Description
Calibrated Images All images are now calibrated to micrometre space. Additional tooling has been built into the digitisation process to enable correct calibration. Calibrated images enable precise measurement on images, as well as a dynamic scale bar.
Encyclopedia of Life (EoL) Integration Our taxonomy is now connected to the EoL. You will notice common names, images, and botanical descriptions accompanying each taxon in our Master Reference Collection.
Completeness Indicators We now display the completion of the GPP's master reference collection, compared to all accepted plant names.
Herbarium Support Reference material that is directly identified can be linked to a herbarium voucher, increasing certainty of its taxonomic identity.
Living Collections Support Reference material that is directly identified can be linked to a living collection in a botanic garden, increasing certainty of its taxonomic identity.
More Complete Attribution We now collect information on field-based 'expert' identifications, reference collection curators, collectors of sample material, and the people prepping reference slides.
Guide Pages A markdown-powered guidance section has been created, and is being filled with new documentation about the Global Pollen Project platform, pollen identification, and reference material.

General improvements include:

Improvement Description
Speed The project has been rewritten using a fuctional approach. All user-facing features are powered by a Redis in-memory database, for near-instant querying.
Temporal Dataset Rather than storing state, all changes to the taxonomy, pollen reference material, and crowdsourced elements are captured as events. This allows us to keep a full history of changes in taxonomy as they occur in the future.

Release 1.0

This release of the Global Pollen Project is detailed in: Martin A.C., and Harvey, W. J. (2017). The Global Pollen Project: A New Tool for Pollen Identification and the Dissemination of Physical Reference Collections. Methods in Ecology and Evolution