Posts Tagged ‘digital libraries’ London Workshop off to a great start

Friday, February 4th, 2011

Seamus Ross

The Workshop on Digital Libraries & Open Access. Interoperability Strategies at the British Academy in London kicked off with a welcome to the DL statekholder community in attendance this morning. Dr Seamus Ross, Dean and Professor at the Faculty of Informatics, University of Toronto thanked the attendants for their support of the event, outlining the main goals of the event. He outlined the main focus of the project, now drawing to an end, in terms of the main outputs presented at the Academy: the Digital Library Reference Model and Technology and Methodology Cookbook. These outputs have drawn on the experiences and knowledge  of representatives flanked by an international team of experts on domains spanning content, functionality, user, policy, quality and architecture. Several experts are in atendance to offer their insights and how collaborative work has helped shape the main project outputs.

Bookmark and Share Workshop: Digital Libraries & Open Access. Interoperability Strategies

Tuesday, December 14th, 2010 is delighted to announce our next and final workshop on 4 February 2011 at the British Academy in London. The Workshop gathers together international experts on Digital Libraries and Open Access repositories (OARs), providing a forum to:

  • Trigger a multi-disciplinary debate about research on Digital Libraries and Open Access.
  • Discuss project results, and existing frameworks and best practices for interoperability within the communities of practice.
  • Propose common strategies for interoperability: start discussing how to implement a mechanism for exchanging, sharing and integrating results between DLs and OARs communities.
  • Create new connections and partnerships, and explore ways for a closer cooperation between researchers and the communities of practice.

British Academy - Workshop Setting

The Workshop addresses interoperability challenges within the context of digital libraries and open access repositories, along the perspectives of content, user, functionality, policy, quality and architecture, the six core domains captured in the Reference Model. Targeted at Library and Information Science researchers and professionals, and to the Open Access community, the event is of interest to people involved in developing interoperability frameworks or models, and people involved in the implementation of digital libraries, institutional, subject or learning object repositories, and associated services across a broad range of communities of practice.

International Experts

Peter Burnhill, EDINA, University of Edinburgh, UK

Pablo De Castro, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid, Spain

Wolfram Horstmann, University of Bielefeld, Germany

Heather Joseph, SPARC, U.S.

Hans Pfeiffenberger, Alfred Wegener Institute, Germany

Experts on Outputs

Leonardo Candela,  National Research Council of Italy

Vittore Casarosa, National Research Council of Italy

Perla Innocenti and Giuseppina Vullo – HATII, University of Glasgow

Introduction and Chair of Round Table on Common Strategies for Interoperability

Seamus Ross, Dean and Professor, Faculty of Information, University of Toronto, Canada

Places are limited due to venue capacity. Early registration is highly recommended. More details here.

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IST-Africa 2011 Scientific Programme Call for Papers

Friday, November 5th, 2010

IST-Africa Call for Papers

Hosted by the Government of Botswana through the Department of Research, Science and Technology, Supported by the European Commission and African Union Commission and Technical Co-Sponsored by IEEE, IST-Africa 2011 will take place in Gaborone, 04 – 06 May 2011. Part of the IST-Africa Initiative, which is supported by the European Commission under the ICT Theme of Framework Programme 7 (FP7), IST-Africa 2011 is the sixth in an Annual Conference Series which brings together senior representatives from leading commercial, government & research organisations across Africa and from Europe, to bridge the Digital Divide by sharing knowledge, experience, lessons learnt and good practice and discussing policy related issues. The scientific programme for IST-Africa 2011 is based on an open Call for Papers
IST-Africa 2011 is focused on applied ICT and the core thematic areas include

  • eHealth
  • eInfrastructures
  • Technology Enhanced Learning and ICT Skills
  • Digital Libraries and Intelligent Content
  • Living Labs
  • Open Source Software
  • ICT for eInclusion and eAccessibility
  • ICT for Environmental Sustainability
  • RFID and Networked Enterprise
  • Cloud Computing
  • eGovernment & eDemocracy
  • Networked Media
  • Transformation of Research Results into Local Innovation
  • IPv6

Interested presenters are encouraged to prepare an 8 page paper (4,000 – 5,000) words following the IST-Africa 2011 paper guidelines and paper template for submission online by 30 November. For more information, please visit the website dedicated pages. All submissions will be double blind reviewed by the International Programme Committee and authors will receive feedback in January. Accepted authors will then be invited to submit a final paper taking account of feedback provided for inclusion in the conference proceedings by 18 February. If individual authors require a short extension to finalise their papers, please contact to organise this.

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Students hail Autumn School a huge success

Wednesday, October 20th, 2010

Students & Lecturers at the Autumn School

Feedback collected from the participants of the Autumn school, which ran 3-8 October 2010 in Athens, underscores the different levels of quality of the event, from the lecturers, background material, expectations, and addressing the main topic to organisational aspects. All participants are interested in attending similar events in the future and almost everyone felt that the cost is acceptable. Here is how the Autumn School faired out of a total score of 5: speaker effectiveness: 4.41; structure of the event: 4.5; value of background documentation: 4.45; organization: 4.83 and addressing the main topic: 4.58. Autumn School

Views from Librarians & Library Managers at the School

The competence of trainers, good explanations of the field are the two things I liked best about the Autumn School. The wide view of DL’s and requirements that have to be discussed for interoperability is my take-home message.”

The topics for the user domain and architecture domain are my favourite workshop features.”

The expertise of the speakers is what impressed me most. I take home general knowledge about the requirements needed.”

I take away with me a method, a complete list of points to take in count, some sites or applications on which I’d like to find more information after the School.”

I liked the part of the practical hands-on exercises, as well as the part where various researchers presented the steps that they are undertaking such as the DRIVER project. The Autumn School was very helpful in understanding matters that are related to the implementation of a digital library, especially the ones that are related with the matter of interoperability.”

Collaboration by working on problem solving solutions, the participation of the speakers during the lessons and presentations scenarios based on real-life cases is what I liked best. Additional practices solutions and best methods in order to organize or reorganize digital libraries and repositories is what I am taking away with me.”

What I liked most was the D4Science demo, bringing a different perspective. For me the main take-away is new knowledge on conceptualisation and generalisation of DL model, as well as interoperability guidelines.”

I really liked the extensive and thorough presentation of all aspects of Digital Libraries, Digital Library Systems and Digital Library Management Systems. I take back with me new know-how on the Reference Model and the Cookbook.”

Views from DL Designers, Software Developers, Technology Coordinators & Project Managers

I most liked the user interactive study approach of Prof. Yannis Ioannidis. I take away with me the systematization of DL research.”

Perfect organisation, good lecturers, interesting topics, and team working exercises are the best things about the Autumn School. I take away some best practices about DLs and interoperability.”

Meeting nice people, the social dinner, and an informative well-structured series of lectures are what I liked best. A better understanding of DL interoperability issues and some general knowledge of the Reference Model is what I am taking away with me.”

The organisation into the various fundamental “domains”, how they have been treated and explained to us, so as to understand the essential importance and role of each of them to achieve interoperability is what I liked best. Useful theoretical as well as practical references to promote some Digital Libraries ideas for future projects in the Organisation is what I am take back with me.”

Many thanks to all the participants, lecturers, hosts and supporters! We hope to interact with you in the future.

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Interoperability Challenges: one perspective

Thursday, October 7th, 2010

One perspective on interoperability at the Autumn School, 3-8 October 2010 in Athens identifies seven issues.

1. Process – what is the boundary between static content, representations, linkages?

2. Authenticity – how do we (people and machines) know “it” is authentic?

3. Quality – how do we measure quality? Does quality change over time?

4. Change over time – how do we create a “dynamic interoperability” framework?

5. Policy – how do we reconcile policies in a contemporary context? How do we handle policy draft?

6. Legal – how can we address issues related to legal aspects?

7. Preservation – how can we preserve interoperability potentiality? What do we preserve? Autumn School Attendees addresses the interoperability challenge from diverse perspectives: content, functionality, user, policy, quality and architecture, investigating the current landscape, pinpointing best practices, evaluating proposed solutions and assisting the library and research community in understanding why interoperability is important and how it can be achieved.

Other perspectives on interoperability were presented at the Autumn School. is proposing best practices and interoperability solutions in its DL Technology and Methodology Cookbook.

Participants at the Autumn School gaining insights into Digital Library & Digital Repository Interoperability.

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Expert Views – Antonella De Robbio on A Digital Agenda for Europe

Thursday, August 12th, 2010

Antonella De Robbio on A Digital Agenda for Europe

Expert View - Antonella De Robbio

I am reading the European Union’s document A Digital Agenda for Europe - COM(2010) 245 – Brussels, 19.05.2010 and I think that it could be useful for the Technology and Methodology Cookbook.*

Take a look at the Key Priority Areas in the Action Plan for the European Digital Agenda. The Agenda outlines seven priority areas for actions; the second one concerning “improving the framework conditions for interoperability between ICT products and services”.
This key priority foresees that it is essential to enhance interoperability between devices, applications, data repositories, services and networks inside a framework where the conditions for interoperability can be improved in various ways. One important means to that end is to ensure that good ICT standards are available and used, notably in public procurement and legislation.
The Digital Agenda also provides some examples:

  • Propose legal measures to reform the rules on implementation of ICT standards to allow the use of certain ICT fora and consortia standards. But the Commission will also address situations in which standards do not help because significant market players do not support them. A further aim is better coordination between public administrations through a new European Interoperability Strategy and Framework to ensure interoperability between eGovernment and other public services across Europe.”

The first priority is defined as “Single Market”, stressing the need to simplifying copyright clearance, management and licensing. In order to reply to this first priority, the Commission, by the end of 2010, will propose a Framework Directive on collective rights management to enhance the governance, transparency and pan European licensing for (online) rights management.
Another point of the Agenda (in the First priority) is make sure consumers are protected in cyberspace by issuing a digital code that summarises the rights of citizens in the online world in a clear and accessible way. Currently many consumers find it difficult to know what their digital rights are, especially when these are scattered across various complex legal documents. I think we have same problems with digital libraries. While this is far worse in the digital world, significant issues could also apply to digital libraries.
A domain policy could serve as a high-level container that specifies performance goals for work processed in resource and actors domains. The domain policy contains all different policies, at different levels, organisatiional, technical and semantic.
Recommendations for investigations:
Key Action 1: Simplify copyright clearance, management and cross-border licensing by:

  • Enhancing the governance, transparency and pan-European licensing for (online) rights management by proposing a framework Directive on collective rights management.
  • Creating a legal framework to facilitate the digitisation and dissemination of cultural works in Europe by proposing a Directive on orphan works, to conduct a dialogue with stakeholders with a view to further measures on out-of print works, complemented by rights information databases.
  • Reviewing the Directive on Re-Use of Public Sector Information, notably its scope and principles on charging for access and use.

Key Action 5: As part of the review of EU standardisation policy, propose legal measures on ICT interoperability to reform the rules on implementation of ICT standards in Europe to allow use of certain ICT fora and consortia standards

Antonella De Robbio, University Centre for Libraries of the Library System, University of Padua, Italy

Useful Links:

* The Cookbook is an innovative artefact that collects and describes a portfolio of best practices, patterns
and solutions to common issues faced when developing large-scale interoperable Digital Library Systems
(DLSs). It proposes an interoperability model that can be used to characterise – in a systematic way – facets
of interoperability challenges, as well as existing, forthcoming solutions and approaches so as to have a framework to select and assess them. A Request for Comment version will be available in late summer
2010. The final version will be informed by feedback from the Digital Library community and published in late 2010.

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Call for Research & Project Papers for 2nd Workshop, Sept 2010

Thursday, May 13th, 2010

ECDL2010, 6-10 September 2010, Glasgow, Scotland


2nd WorkshopMaking Digital Libraries Interoperable: Challenges & Approaches, 9-10 September 2010 during the 14th European Conference on Digital Libraries (ECDL2010), Glasgow, Scotland, UK

The Workshop explores Digital Library (DL) interoperability from multi-faceted perspectives spanning content, functionality, user, policy, quality and architecture and offers a forum for a fruitful exchange of ideas on DL interoperability challenges and approaches. (Digital Library Interoperability, Best Practices & Modelling Foundations) is soliciting two types of contributions: Research & Project papers for our 2nd Workshop:

Research Papers

Authors are invited to submit original research papers addressing current approaches and new research directions for  tackling multi-faceted digital library interoperability issues.
Topics of interest include, but are not limited to:

  • Theoretical Foundations of Interoperability in Digital Library
  • Emerging interoperability issues
  • Standard-based approaches toward interoperability
  • Technologies promoting interoperability
  • Mediator-based approaches toward interoperability
  • Concrete implementations and exploitations of interoperability solution
  • Evaluation of interoperability approaches and solutions
  • Interoperability Models
  • Ontology driven interoperability
  • Metadata interoperability
  • Interoperability levels

Research papers will have a full-length oral presentation and will be published in a high-quality proceedings volume. Each submitted paper must not exceed 10 pages in total.

Project Papers
Authors are invited to submit papers focusing on DL interoperability approaches and solutions adopted and lessons learned when implementing interoperable DL systems in the context of European, international and national projects.
These papers will have a short oral presentation and will be included in the “Project Papers” section of the Workshop proceedings. Each submitted paper must not exceed 8 pages in total.

Reviewing Process

The reviewing process will be carried out by the members of the Workshop International Programme Committee. Two referees will review each paper. Members of the Programme Committee include Tiziana Catarci, University of Rome “La Sapienza”, Italy; Jane Hunter, University of Queensland, Australia; Ronald Larsen, University of Pittsburgh, U.S.; John Mylopoulos, University of Toronto, Canada; Fabio Simeoni, University of Strathclyde, Scotland, UK; Dagobert Soergel, University at Buffalo, U.S.

Important Dates & Paper Submission
Paper Submission: 30 June 2010
Notification of Acceptance: 16 July 2010
Camera ready Papers: 30 July 2010
All contributions must be written in English. They must follow the formatting guidelines of Springer’s Lecture Notes in Computer Science (LNCS) and must be submitted via the workshop submission system.

Bookmark and Share Workshop on Policy & Quality Interoperability at ECA2010

Thursday, May 13th, 2010

The workshop entitled “Policy and Quality Interoperability: an organisational approach for digital archives and digital libraries”, which was spearheaded by Dr Perla Innocenti and Dr Giuseppina Vullo, both from the University of Glasgow, and Professor Seamus Ross, Dean of the Faculty of Information, University of Toronto, was successfully held on 29th April 2010 within the 8th European Conference on Digital Archiving (ECA 2010, 28-30 April 2010, Geneva, Switzerland,

Giuseppina Vullo @ Policy & Quality Workshop, ECA2010

The workshop was led by Dr Giuseppina Vullo (pictured left), who presented the research and activities towards policy and quality interoperability. The audience actively and fruitfully interacted on the key issues being addressed by the Policy Working Group and Quality Working Group, spanning the main challenges affecting digital libraries on policy and quality interoperability, to cross-domain user scenarios.

Attendees at the Policy & Quality Workshop, ECA2010

Another success factor was participation in the policy and quality interoperability survey targeting international digital libraries and archives on the part of several attendees. – On the Road – coming soon!

1) 2nd International Conference on Qualitative and Quantitative Methods in Libraries (QQML), 25-28 May 2010, Chania, Crete, Greece. The talk draws on the interim findings of the six thematic Working Groups focusing on content, functionality, user, policy, quality and architecture that co-ordinated. The talk, entitled “Paving the way for Interoperability in Digital Libraries: The Project”, is based on a paper by Katerina El Raheb and co-authored by members of the Consortium.

2) presentation on Policy & Quality Interoperability Challenges & Approaches for Digital Libraries on 2 June at Archiving 2010, The Hague, Netherlands. The Policy and Quality Working Group co-ordinators are presenting a paper on DL interoperability challenges and approaches on 2 June 2010 during the Archiving 2010 conference in The Hague.
The presentation, co-authored by Perla Innocenti, Seamus Ross and Giuseppina Vullo, is entitled “Towards Policy and Quality Interoperability: Challenges and approaches for Digital Libraries”. Perla Innocenti (pictured) leads the presentation with a focus on:

  • Policy and quality within the DELOS Digital Library Reference Model
  • Core policy and quality aspects affecting information systems
  • The policy and quality interoperability frameworks
  • Real-world cases on policy and quality interoperability
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Perspectives on Interoperability

Friday, March 12th, 2010

Two European projects, and and Europeana, are both facing the challenges of interoperability but from different perspectives. Europeana, a multilingual single-access point to Europe’s cultural heritage, needs to find a viable solution to the interoperability challenge while implementing a large-scale operational DL system.

To  achieve this goal, Europeana has to solve many interoperability issues. These fall into two main categories, that is, issues arising:

  • from the provider side, that is, when gathering content from provider institutions
  • from the consumer side, that is, when third parties use the Europeana services either as end-users or as service providers.

In the first instance, Europeana must interoperate with memory institutions to get the metadata used to offer its services. This is currently achieved by adopting a standard solution, namely the Open Archives Initiative Protocol for Metadata Harvesting, or OAI-PMH for short.  Once Europeana acquires the data, it has to map it from the original format to the Europeana Data Model. This mapping requires the knowledge of the semantics of the source and target data models. It can thus be regarded as a semantic interoperability problem at the content level.

And the consumer side?

Europeana is making its contents available through a number of Application Programming Interfaces (APIs), each one addressing the needs of a particular category of users. These APIs will be used by consumers to obtain services from Europeana based on the outcomes of negotiations between the parties concerned.

By contrast, is aimed at developing a comprehensive framework that characterises various interoperability challenges and promoting solutions systematically. Within this framework, representatives from major initiatives and on-going projects can work with, deliberating key issues, sharing experiences and expertise, working on the interoperability of their solutions, and promoting shared standards. expects to provide the DL research and application community with a deeper understanding that will pave the way towards innovative foundational and technical advances.

In particular, the project is facing the interoperability challenge from diverse perspectives, encompassing architecture, content, functionality, policy, quality, and user, aimed at contributing to raising awareness on the intrinsically multi-faceted nature of interoperability.

The Role of the enhanced DL Reference Model

As a result, the enhanced Reference Model (V1.0 with new versions planned) characterises the DL universe in terms of well-established concepts and relationships, thus providing a conceptual framework within which interoperability issues can be addressed.

DL Technology & Methodology Cookbook

This outcome will be enforced by the DL containing guidelines, best practices, enabling technologies and approaches guiding DL developers and designers with off-the-shelf certified solutions ready to be used when dealing with interoperability. & Europeana Strategic Alliance
Because of their complementary missions, and Europeana can benefit from the outcomes achieved by both projects. The outcomes of the research conducted by can be effectively leveraged by Europeana during its next phases when a more sophisticated interaction scheme with providers and consumers will be defined. Vice versa, the experiences and knowledge gained by Europeana provides extremely valuable input and feedback to activities.

How do we interact? & Europeana work together on different levels. Several Europeana experts are members of’s Working Groups:

Carlo Meghini, Institute of Information Science & Technologies at the National Research Centre of Italy and Stefan Gradmann, Humboldt University (Germany) are both members of the Content Working Group.

Bram van der Werf serves as a member of the Architecture Working Group.

Read our interview with Jill Cousins, Director of Europeana.

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