What is neuroinformatics
Neuroinformatics is a research field devoted to the development of neuroscience data and knowledge bases together with computational models and analytical tools for sharing, integration, and analysis of experimental data and advancement of theories about the nervous system function. In the INCF context, neuroinformatics refers to scientific information about primary experimental data, ontology, metadata, analytical tools, and computational models of the nervous system. The primary data includes experiments and experimental conditions concerning the genomic, molecular, structural, cellular, networks, systems and behavioural level, in all species and preparations in both the normal and disordered states.
In recognition that advancement of our understanding of the functions and mechanisms of the nervous system will only be achieved through a coordinated, global scientific effort, the Neuroinformatics Working Group of the Global Science Forum of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) recommended the establishment of an international organization to coordinate the application of the integrated methods of neuroscience and information science/technology, neuroinformatics, in June 2002. This recommendation was formally endorsed by the OECD Science and Technology Ministerial meeting held in January 2004 and led to the establishment of the International Neuroinformatics Coordinating Facility (INCF).
Through its 18 national nodes, the INCF network serves as a forum to collaboratively coordinate global neuroinformatics activities that guide and oversee the development of standards, best practices, ontologies, and other unifying activities that fulfil the mission of INCF.