The SYNTHESYS consortium has been operational since 2004, and has facilitated physical access by individual researchers to European natural history collections through its Transnational Access programme (TA). For the first time, SYNTHESYS+ will be offering virtual access to collections through digitisation, with two calls for the programme, the first in 2020 and the second in 2021. The Virtual Access (VA) programme is not a direct digital parallel of Transnational Access - proposals for collections digitisation will be prioritised and carried out based on community demand, and data must be made openly available immediately. A key feature of Virtual Access is that, unlike TA, it does not select the researchers to whom access is provided. Because Virtual Access in this way is new to the community and to the collections-holding institutions, the SYNTHESYS+ consortium invited ideas through an Ideas Call, that opened on 7th October 2019 and closed on 22nd November 2019, in order to assess interest and to trial procedures. This report is intended to provide feedback to those who participated in the Ideas Call and to help all applicants to the first SYNTHESYS+Virtual Access Call that will be launched on 20th of February 2020.
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