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From CegeSoma spreadsheets to Linked Data: a Wikibase journey[edit]


Slides (PDF file) are now available on Adochs website.


Study day on Linked Data, November 22, 2019. Brussels, Royal Library of Belgium.

hastag : #LinkingThePast

Free registration.


From CegeSoma spreadsheets to Linked Data: a Wikibase journey


Anne Chardonnens (Université libre de Bruxelles, ReSIC / CegeSoma - Archives de l'Etat en Belgique)


Anne Chardonnens holds a Master's degree in Cultural Management from the Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB). She is currently pursuing a PhD in Information and Communication Sciences and Technologies at the same university. Since November 2016, she has joined CegeSoma to take part in the ADOCHS project, which aims to improve quality control processes in the context of of cultural heritage digitization. Her work focuses on user needs, participatory practices, and the impact of web data on archival (meta)data.


The web of data leads to an evolution of galleries, libraries, archives, and museums (GLAM) authority data, which gradually move from strings to entities identified by Uniform Resource Identifiers (URIs). These URIs help to go beyond the pale of natural language ambiguities, but also to link these entities to others in a machine-readable format. However, this transition is not trivial to implement. How can an institution with limited means consider sharing and linking data while still using local tabular files to store information?

I investigate this question through a case study based on the nominative data of CegeSoma (Centre for Historical Research and Documentation on War and Society) and the use of Wikibase, the free software behind Wikidata. Besides enabling integration of heterogeneous sources in the same data infrastructure, Wikibase can also assign persistent identifiers to individuals, deal with multilingual content, and query data through SPARQL queries. This talk aims to show the opportunities and challenges of this process, from name disambiguation to data modelling, with an emphasis on the interaction between Wikidata and Wikibase.


See also[edit]