ADISC UPDATE – August 2002

AZA’s Animal Data Information Systems Committee (ADISC) is in full gear with phase II of the ZIMS project (Zoological Information Management System). This effort will result in a Request For Proposals (RFP) document that can then be sent to potential vendors for bid on software development.

From June 10-13, the Zoological Society of San Diego hosted the first workshop of Phase II. Its purpose was to delineate the core inventory portion of the conceptual data model created in Phase I. Twenty participants representing the regional associations of AZA, EAZA, ARAZPA and CAZA as well as ISIS staff members were asked to refine, on a high level, the functionality and current structural limitations of the ARKS4 software. The goal of this workshop and the veterinary workshop held in July is to ensure that all current structural limitations of systems used today are addressed, as well as to get a consensus from the participants on what features and functions are crucial to the first release of a new software product.

In May, a "Groups" meeting was held in Seattle to develop methods for managing and tracking animals in groups and colonies. The result of that meeting proved to be very beneficial in flushing out the intricacies of group composition and management in the conceptual data model. Additionally, with the help of the Inteq Group, the participants were able to validate and better understand the architecture of the data model and develop summary-level use cases. Use cases show the possible sequences of interactions between the system and its users in order to assure the user that their goals will be carried out properly.

Phase II June10 workshop participants also had the opportunity to see first hand a prototype of the technology survey that is currently in progress. This survey is an important component to the development of the RFP. It will provide great insight to potential vendors about the current technical environment in our industry and allow them to determine and recommend appropriate technology for the future system.

ADISC would like to thank all the participants who attended as well as the Zoological Society of San Diego for hosting the workshop. For additional information about Phase II and workshop questions, please contact committee chair, Bruce Bohmke,, or project manager, Sue DuBois, or visit the project web site at

Phase II – Workshop I Participants

Beth Bahner (Philadelphia Zoo), Sharon Baker (San Diego Zoological Society, ZSSD), Billie Bearden (ZSSD), Bruce Bohmke (Woodland Park Zoo), Duncan Bolton (EAZA), Becky Bryning (ZSSD), John Carnio (CAZA), Sue DuBois (ZIMS Project Manager), Hank Erb (ZSSD), Robert Erhardt (ZSSD), Nilda Ferrer (Wildlife Conservation Society), Toni Giezendanner (ZSSD), Kevin Johnson (ARAZPA), Hans Keller (National Aquarium in Baltimore), Robert Lacy (Brookfield Zoo), Adrienne Miller (Roger Williams Park Zoo), Paul Scobie (ISIS), Brandie Smith (AZA), Ross Snipp (ISIS), Brent Whitaker (National Aquarium in Baltimore)