The management of metadata, within a Knowledge Base (KB, or more than one), is an important aspect of the early work of FOLIO. This living document presents our current thinking and proposed plan for ongoing development.
The environment within which metadata and Knowledge Bases exist is rapidly evolving, and no single approach to metadata and knowledge management (or choice of implementation systems) spans institutions, groups, nations or cultures.
A broadening spectrum of resource types, purposes and contexts is putting pressure on the ability to support and move between a wider variety of metadata representations and formats. In part, this means there is no longer a single obvious choice for the format or representation of metadata.
More sharing across institutional boundaries, in response to the burden of an increasing rate of change of metadata and quantity of resources to describe, is affecting attitudes towards authority and ownership.
This document covers the initial scope of the metadata work within FOLIO and is focused on the operational needs of an academic library. It currently only covers some basic aspects of bibliographic and holdings/catalog metadata.
Any resource metadata management system needs to support the operational needs of a variety of Library contexts, some of which are:
These different contexts might have overlapping yet significantly different needs and workflows, each will use different aspects of a variety of metadata models for resources.
Bibliographic and management metadata is increasingly used in a variety of learning, teaching and scholarly communication (amongst others) contexts. We need to be mindful to create a model that supports unforeseen use by new applications.
Some recent examples of this are:
Article subject area analysis to predict possible funding opportunities and inform research decisions
Article Processing Charge (APC) handling where libraries are struggling to track the cost of open access venue publication in an auditable way.
Analytics and reporting on institutional scholarly communication processes, such as the Research Excellence Framework.
Institutional responsibility to store, publish, and preserve data and other artifacts of the research process.
FOLIOs purpose for providing a platform for building library systems expands the technical considerations beyond what is typically present in the development of an Integrated Library System.
As the metadata modules are fundamental parts of a FOLIO system it is important that any reference implementations demonstrate effective use of the platform.
Examples of some of the technical aspects relevant to providing metadata:
Modular separation of concerns and behaviour (e.g. storage and business logic)
Integration of a combination of existing external open source and commercial systems
Interchange (publishing and consumption) of linked data representations of resource metadata
The scope and objectives above are broad and cover a lot of areas and topics, and in order to demonstrate incremental progress and to elicit feedback, we need to choose a narrower focus for where to begin.
Our initial work is intended to support the needs of the ongoing FOLIO development and provide basic capabilities needed to operate a library catalog.
We will expand on other areas of bibliographic and management metadata as the work progresses.
Within the context described above, some initial goals for metadata support with FOLIO could be:
Reduce repeated cataloguing effort within organisations
Allow organisations to transition to FOLIO incrementally
Establish the groundwork for support of data formats beyond MARC and bibliographic standards beyond AACR2 or RDA
Unify electronic and physical resource management where possible
To begin to achieve those goals, the outcomes we seek are to:
Support reference and copy cataloging
Support external bibliographic and management metadata knowledge bases
Support a wide range of resource types
Support a wide range of import and export formats and representations
Support a wide variety of technology choices (both open source and commercial)
Easily map existing catalogs to external bibliographic or subscription metadata
In order to start having the desired impacts above, an initial set of deliverables could be a system which provides:
Basic representation of physical monographs for circulation
Ingesting of an existing inventory of physical monographs
Basic representation of electronic journals or books (to be decided) and entitlements
Bibliographic metadata read from an external Knowledge Base
Management metadata read from an external Knowledge Base
Below is a short description of the scope of each of the above deliverables.
This is the most basic requirement of any inventory capabilities and will underpin basic circulation of monograph copies.
This deliverable will introduce the concepts of an item and (internal) instance into the domain model.
This deliverable allows for a collection of physical monographs (possibly represented in MARC21 or MODS) to be imported into the FOLIO inventory.
This will test and demonstrate the initial basic cataloguing capabilities of FOLIO and provide a basis for different models for transitioning to FOLIO based resource management.
Some degree of instance matching and consolidation between items will be included in this work. As will the storage of the original source records which were ingested.
Both of the current example external Knowledge Base systems primarily contain electronic resources, therefore in order to demonstrate integration with external systems, FOLIO first needs to support some aspects of electronic resources.
This deliverable will likely introduce the concepts of packages, subscriptions and entitlements, and will be the first opportunity to try and unify the resource management models for physical and electronic resources.
We will decide closer to implementation which of electronic books or journals to support first.
This deliverable will provide the ability to read bibliographic metadata (predominantly instances) from an external Knowledge Base system.
How we might start to map local (internal) bibliographic and holdings metadata to global (external) definitions is a major part of this work.
In order to test the design of the interfaces involved in this process, it is prudent to integrate with a variety of existing systems. Choosing one open source system (e.g. GOKb) and one commercial system (e.g. EBSCO EPKB) could provide a good starting point for this.
This work extends the integration with an external Knowledge Base to reading management metadata (predominantly items and entitlements, but may also include package, platforms and subscriptions).
An important aspect of this work is in trying to determine a general agreeable set of nomenclature for this domain.
Below is a partial and speculative conceptual domain model, intended to show many of the core aspects of resource metadata (mostly bibliographic and management) and to elicit feedback from the community.
Only some of the concepts within the broader domain are relevant to circulation and access, however they are intended to represent the start of a model that is used in a variety of contexts.
An expansion of the terminology used in this diagram is available in Appendix 1.
All efforts carry some risks, this is a partial list of identified (known) risks surrounding this work.
|Overly specific bibliographic metadata formats and representations (e.g. too predominantly coupled to MARC21)|
|Usage||Statistics relating to how frequently an electronic resource has been accessed|
|Authority||The organisation (e.g. Library of Congress) responsible for an established particular form of a concept (e.g. subject or person)|
|Bibliographic Metadata||Metadata describing a bibliographic resource such as title, author(s), publisher, date and place of publication, edition, standard numbers (identifiers?), subjects, format|
An entitlement to an electronic resource
|Entitlement||The access granted to an organization, allowing it to a resource|
|External Instance||An instance whose authoritative representation is owned by an external bibliographic metadata knowledge base|
|Holdings||All resources contained within or accessible via a given library|
|Knowledge Base||An external source of metadata related to resources|
|Identifier (standard number?)||A alphanumeric string used as a unique identifier for a resource. Some identifier types have established validation rules (e.g. ISBN and ISSN)|
|Ingest / Import||The act of importing, or ingesting, and processing information from an external vendor|
|Instance||A material embodiment of a resource, e.g. a particular published form|
|Internal Instance||An instance whose authoritative representation is locally scoped to the organisation whose holdings/catalog contains one or more copies. May be derived from an External Instance.|
|Inventory||The group of physical items an organization owns (and is entitled to use)|
|Physical Item||An physical item is an physical copy of an Instance Ownership of which effectively entitles an organisation to use it|
|Loan||The process by which the system: (1) validates whether or not a library user can borrow a library item based on defined attributes and (2) if a loan is permitted, links the item with the patron and applies certain conditions based on policies|
|Management Metadata (or Administrative Metadata)|
Data about an information resource primarily intended to facilitate its management
|Metadata||data that provides information about other data|
|Package||A grouping of instances on a platform offered by a supplier under particular terms|
|Platform||An interface that administers or delivers electronic resources content, or provides a route to the content, to the user|
|Resource||an item that may be collected and/or made available by an organization|
|the practices and techniques used by librarians and library staff to track the selection, acquisition, licensing, access, maintenance, usage, evaluation, retention, and de-selection of a library’s resources[derived from 4]|
|Source Record||The original representation of a record ingested from an external source (relates to records which were derived from it)|
|Subscription||A subscription is an agreement or potential agreement between a ‘subscriber’ and a 'provider' to gain access to a set of resources, for a period of time, under specific conditions (set out in a license and/or elsewhere), and usually at a specific cost|
FOLIO Product Council, Glossary of Terms, available at https://wiki.folio.org/display/PC/Glossary+of+Terms (accessed 2016-12-15)
Library of Congress, Overview of the BIBFRAME 2.0 model, available at https://www.loc.gov/bibframe/docs/bibframe2-model.html (accessed 2016-11-09)
Kabalog (n): Unified data model and infrastructure for conventional bibliographic metadata and E-resource Knowledge Bases.
I generally extend this definition mean an expression of the tension between a desire for the fusion of knowledge base and catalog contexts whilst keeping some of the concepts in those worlds distinct and loosely coupled.