Pelagios benefits a number of institutions and the wider community through its extensive network of collaborations:
1. Pelagios brings together three projects within major international universities to thrash out a core ontology for all users working with place reference data. They are:
- The Open University’s LUCERO (Linking University Content for Education and Research Online), a JISC-funded project that is all about making University wide resources available to everyone using linked open data (LOD)
- The Archaeological Computing Research Group of the University of Southampton, which involves archaeologists and computer scientists working together to develop Semantic Web data integration.
- Pleiades, a joint project of the Ancient World Mapping Center, the Stoa Consortium, and the Institute for the Study of the Ancient World. Supported also by the U.S. National Endowment for the Humanities, Pleiades is giving scholars, students, and enthusiasts worldwide the ability to use, create and share historical geographic information about the Greek and Roman World in digital form.
2. Pelagios takes this core ontology and investigates its adoption by five international projects, which are already finding ways of extracting and using placename information. Each representing a different kind of document type, they are:
- Google Ancient Places has been sponsored by Google to discover and represent place references in the unstructured XML of the Google Books Corpus. GAP is a consortium based at the OU, Southampton, Edinburgh and Berkeley with considerable experience in ancient geospatial data drawn from HESTIA, Open Context and CHALICE.
- The Perseus project is a world leader in providing digital resources of the ancient world, focused primarily on primary sources enriched with structural mark-up. It is backed by the US National Endowment for the Humanities, the National Science Foundation, the Institute for Museum and Library Services, the Fund for the Improvement for Postsecondary Education, the Department of Education, the Mellon Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Arts.
- Arachne is the central object database of the German Archaeological Institute, hosted and developed in cooperation with the Cologne Digital Archaeology Laboratory at the University of Cologne. Arachne has over 5,000 registered users who can access its extensive OER materials (850,000 scanned images and documentation for c. 250,000 sites and objects) free of charge.
- SPQR is a JISC-funded project (JISCMRD Programme) using LOD approaches to provide integrated views across diverse resources relating to fragmentary ancient documents.
- The Digital Memory Engineering (DME) research group of the Austrian Institute of Technology (AIT) is exploring ways of enabling and integrating services for the Europeana cultural heritage Web portal (see the Annotation Prototype) with an expertise in map documents.
By having each project partner document the process by which they take up and use the ontology, Pelagios will provide a benchmark publication that offers guidance to the community for using linked open geo-data (a LOG paradigm). In addition, by bringing these existing international repositories of Ancient World resources together, Pelagios will encourage its partners to exchange data, practices and experience with each other, their large extant user-base, JISC, and users worldwide.
3. Finally, Pelagios will demonstrate the value of the ontology to non-technical users by experimenting with various accessible web services that could draw upon it.
Benefits (summary table)
|Partner projects are already investing considerable resources in geospatially annotating their holdings. Pelagios will enable them to do this in a common framework, thereby increasing reusability of their data.||ontology development; data annotation; process documentation; tool development; tool reviewing; workshop attendance.|
|Workshop attendees / Data publishers||Data publishers will benefit from both a field guide to LOG publication for multiple document types and a clear ontology against which their data can be validated.||constructive feedback through consultation; workshop attendance where possible.|
|End users (teachers, researchers, learners)||Easy-to-use web visualization tools will provide immediate access for researchers, students and members of the public. A REST-based Web service will give Digital Humanists the power to perform large scale queries and complex analyses.||interest in ancient geodata; adoption of tools and services.|
|JISC||Pelagios will provide JISC with a variety of infrastructure assets (ontology, documentation, tools) that enable it to offer strategic leadership in the field of Linked Open Geodata||funding; involvement in project meetings and dissemination; synthesis project; programme activities.|