Newsletter no. 7, December 2011

Agricultural Information Management Standards (AIMS)
no. 7, December 2011

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What is Linked Open Data (LOD)?


Monthly Spotlight

LOD is a set of best practices for publishing and connecting structured data on the Web

About LOD

Talk by Tim Berners-Lee at TED2009

Linked Data: evolving the Web into a Global Data Space

Tutorial: Introducing Linked Data and the Semantic Web

The Linked Open Data Cloud Diagramm



LODE-BD: how to select appropriate encoding strategies for producing Linked Open Data (LOD)-enabled bibliographic data

Linked Open (meta)Data

Upcoming Events

Spain. eKNOW 2012 on Information, Process, and Knowledge Management

Malaysia. ICOSE 2012 on Ontological and Semantic Engineering

India. 57th All India Library Conference of the Indian Library Association

Nepal. WINBIS 2012 on Wireless Information Networks & Business Information System

USA. SPARC Open Access Meeting 2012

South Africa. 3rd IAALD Africa Chapter Conference

Benin. eLearning Africa 2012

More at Events Service


ZAR4DIN uses AGRIS AP and AgriDrupal

In 2010 the Zambia Agricultural Research for Development Information Network (ZAR4DIN) project started. Its goal: facilitating access to institutional repositories through a national AR4D portal. The pilot institutions in the project have been the Zambian Agricultural Research Institute (ZARI), the National Institute for Scientific and Industrial Research (NISIR) and the National Agricultural Information Services (NAIS) of the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives.

The architecture of the system consists of data providers – currently, ZARI, NAIS and NISIR – and a national service provider, the ZAR4DIN portal. For the moment the providers manage their electronic resources locally without providing web access to them. ZAR4DIN periodically imports records from the three providers and gives access to them through a search engine.

Standard vocabularies and metadata sets, based on AGRIS AP, are used to manage and expose information so that records from the different sources can be smoothly integrated in the portal. The CMS chosen for ZAR4DIN and two of the three data providers is AgriDrupal. This project demonstrates how adopting Institutional policies, content management methodologies and information sharing approaches that follow CIARD Pathways to Research Uptake can help in the development of an integrated national agricultural information system.



VocBench 1.3 released!

The OEKCS team at FAO with the assistance of MIMOS Berhad in Malaysia have released VocBench version 1.3. This version consolidates a number of critical usability fixes identified during trials with an exciting new international, multi-lingual, globally-dispersed user group. This new group of editors manage the widely-used biotechnology glossary.

AIMS participated in 10th NKOS Workshop

The 10th European Networked Knowledge Organization Systems/Services (NKOS) Workshop took place on 28-29 September in Berlin, Germany, as part of the International Conference on Theory and Practice of Digital Libraries. During the "SKOS / Linked Data" session the VocBench team presented the paper A Collaborative Framework for Managing and Publishing KOS. The paper reported about the VocBench,with AGROVOC as core vocabulary. The presentation showed the re-modeling of AGROVOC from OWL back to RDF SKOS/SKOS-XL. All presentations and abstracts are available on the workshop website.

EIFL-PLIP grants available to innovative libraries in Ghana, Kenya and Uganda

EIFL’s Public Library Innovation Programme (PLIP) invites public and community libraries in Ghana, Kenya and Uganda to apply for grants to use information and communication technology  to extend their services to improve lives in their communities.

Grant maximum: US$15,000
Implementation period: 12 months
Application deadline: January 31, 2012

Open Access Africa 2011 presentations online

The Open Access Africa 2011 conference took place on 25-26 October at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) in Ghana. The presentations and poster abstracts are now online.

More news at Of Interest

5 Questions in 5 Minutes with Edith Hesse


Who are the users of AIMS and what do they think about agricultural information management standards? In this section AIMS users from all around the world answer five questions on the benefits and use of the AIMS website.

Tell us something about yourself... what is your background and role in the organization you are working for?
I am currently the President of the International Association of Agricultural Information Specialists (IAALD). With a Ph.D. in Socio-economics from the University of Social and Economic Sciences, Vienna, Austria, I joined the Economics Program at the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT) in Mexico in 1979 and in 1984 became the leader of a scientific information management project funded by the International Development Research Centre (IDRC), Canada. In 2001, I was invited by the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT) in Colombia to head the Information and Documentation Unit and in 2006 became the Head of Corporate Communications and Capacity Strengthening (CCC). Throughout my professional career I tried to implement innovative scientific information management and knowledge sharing approaches and was commissioned by the World Bank, the Kellogg Foundation, and other entities in Latin America, Africa, and Asia to perform consultancies. Upon retiring from CIAT at the end of 2011, I have decided to establish my new/old home base in Austria.

How did you get in contact with AIMS?
I am continuously looking for up-to-date information in the information management and knowledge sharing area and in this search have become familiar with AIMS in its very early stages.

What is your opinion on AIMS?
It's a very active service with many different components and a lot of useful news items - sometimes too many, but that's what anyone in our profession has to cope with. However, certain components may become particularly relevant, once we ourselves or our colleagues become involved in projects that require them.

According to you, what is the most important benefit that AIMS provides to the agricultural information management community?
Information management standards are living entities and must evolve over time. To have a group that is not only closely involved in setting and updating these standards, but also efficiently communicating on what is going on, is enormously valuable.

How do you think that information management standards can contribute to agricultural research for development?
Having worked in developing countries for the past 35 years, convinced me of the value of south-south collaboration. Precisely in agriculture there are location-specific technologies and innovations that require south-south information flows to work efficiently. For instance a disease efficiently combatted with biological means in Latin America, could easily be prevented in similar eco-reginonal circumstances in Africa and Asia. In order to make this happen, Spanish language articles, news and concepts, need to become known quickly and efficiently by African and Asian researchers and technicians, confronted with similar disease threats. Information management tools such as the multi-lingual thesaurus AGROVOC dating back to the 1970s and updated regularly continue to play an important role in such information exchanges.

The scope of the AIMS Newsletter is to bring under the attention of the AIMS community recent news, events and achievements in the field of agricultural information management. If you have any contribution, suggestion, or need assistance with the newsletter, please contact us at [email protected]

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