The Ontology Plug-in tool was created at Hasselt University by Dimitri Surinx, Jeroen Vaelen and Niki Vandesbosch in August 2012, under the supervision of Dirk Leinders, ICT Department,(Hasselt University) and in cooperation with Christophe Dupriez, Développement de Systèmes de Traitement de l'INformation (Destin).
The Ontology Plug-in is useful as an authority tool in the submission process of any repository, document or content management system. Although the tool was developed in the context of AgriOceanDSpace, it is an independent plug-in that can be used with other applications.
The ontology plug-in searches multiple thesauri and ontologies simultaneously by using a web service broker. Currently, the Ontology Plug-in searches the AGROVOC and ASFA thesauri; Plant ontology and NERC-C19 ontology [An Oceanographic Geographical Ontology], and Ocean Expert. The needs of the semantic web and modern information retrieval has necessitated the utilization of multiple vocabularies and ontologies in information management and the Ontology Plug-in was conceptualized against this background.