NISO Publishes Themed Issue of Information Standards Quarterly on Linked Data for Libraries, Archives, and Museums

Contributed articles illustrate both challenges and innovations in implementing linked data

Baltimore, MD - September 10, 2012 - The National Information Standards Organization (NISO) announces the publication of a special themed issue of the Information Standards Quarterly (ISQ) magazine on Linked Data for Libraries, Archives, and Museums. ISQ Guest Content Editor, Corey Harper, Metadata Services Librarian, New York University has pulled together a broad range of perspectives on what is happening today with linked data in cultural institutions. He states in his introductory letter, "As the Linked Data Web continues to expand, significant challenges remain around integrating such diverse data sources. As the variance of the data becomes increasingly clear, there is an emerging need for an infrastructure to manage the diverse vocabularies used throughout the Web-wide network of distributed metadata. Development and change in this area has been rapidly increasing; this is particularly exciting, as it gives a broad overview on the scope and breadth of developments happening in the world of Linked Open Data for Libraries, Archives, and Museums."
The feature article by Gordon Dunsire, Corey Harper, Diane Hillmann, and Jon Phipps on Linked Data Vocabulary Management describes the shift in popular approaches to large-scale metadata management and interoperability to the increasing use of the Resource Description Framework to link bibliographic data into the larger web community. The authors also identify areas where best practices and standards are needed to ensure a common and effective linked data vocabulary infrastructure.

Four "in practice" articles illustrate the growth in the implementation of linked data in the cultural sector. Jane Stevenson in Linking Lives describes the work to enable structured and linked data from the Archives Hub in the UK. In Joining the Linked Data Cloud in a Cost-Effective Manner, Seth van Hooland, Ruben Verborgh, and Rik Van de Walle show how general purpose Interactive Data Transformation tools, such as Google Refine, can be used to efficiently perform the necessary task of data cleaning and reconciliation that precedes the opening up of linked data. Ted Fons, Jeff Penka, and Richard Wallis discuss OCLC's Linked Data Initiative and the use of in WorldCat to make library data relevant on the web. In Europeana: Moving to Linked Open Data, Antoine Isaac, Robina Clayphan, and Bernhard Haslhofer explain how the metadata for over 23 million objects are being converted to an RDF-based linked data model in the European Union's flagship digital cultural heritage initiative.

Jon Voss provides a status on Linked Open Data for Libraries, Archives, and Museums (LODLAM) State of Affairs and the annual summit to advance this work. Thomas Elliott, Sebastian Heath, John Muccigrosso Report on the Linked Ancient World Data Institute, a workshop to further the availability of linked open data to create reusable digital resources with the classical studies disciplines.

Kevin Ford wraps up the contributed articles with a standard spotlight article on LC's Bibliographic Framework Initiative and the Attractiveness of Linked Data. This Library of Congress-led community effort aims to transition from MARC 21 to a linked data model.

"The move to a linked data model in libraries and other cultural institutions represents one of the most profound changes that our community is confronting," stated Todd Carpenter, NISO Executive Director. "While it completely alters the way we have always described and cataloged bibliographic information, it offers tremendous opportunities for making this data accessible and usable in the larger, global web community. This special issue of ISQ demonstrates the great strides that libraries, archives, and museums have already made in this arena and illustrates the future world that awaits us."

"Institutions that are just starting to dip their toes in the waters of linked data will find much in this issue of ISQ to inspire and challenge them," said Cynthia Hodgson, ISQ Managing Editor. "Those further along the implementation path can learn how others have addressed the common issues encountered in making the transition to a linked data model."

ISQ is available in open access in electronic format on the NISO website. Both the entire issue and individual articles may be freely downloaded. Print copies are available by subscription and as print on demand. For more information and to access the free electronic version, visit:

About Information Standards Quarterly
Information Standards Quarterly (ISQ) is NISO's print and electronic magazine for communicating standards-based technology and best practices in library, publishing, and information technology, particularly where these three areas overlap. ISQ reports on the progress of active developments and also on implementations, case studies, and best practices that show potentially replicable efforts.

About NISO
NISO fosters the development and maintenance of standards that facilitate the creation, persistent management, and effective interchange of information so that it can be trusted for use in research and learning. To fulfill this mission, NISO engages libraries, publishers, information aggregators, and other organizations that support learning, research, and scholarship through the creation, organization, management, and curation of knowledge. NISO works with intersecting communities of interest and across the entire lifecycle of an information standard. NISO is a not-for-profit association accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). More information about NISO is available on its website: For more information please contact NISO at (301) 654-2512 or via e-mail at